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ETF Demand Relentless, $74B In April

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·16 min read
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ETFs continued to swallow up assets in April as investors added $74.2 billion to the space. An unrelenting rally in U.S. stocks helped the mood during the month: The S&P 500 breached 4,200 for the first time, bringing its year-to-date gains up to 11.7%.

With four months in the books, U.S.-listed ETFs have pulled in a net $320.3 billion in fresh cash, well ahead of last year’s $121.1 billion pace.

While certainly large and impressive, nothing about April’s inflows was particularly surprising. U.S. equity ETFs picked up the lion’s share of new assets—$31.8 billion—followed by U.S. fixed income ETFs at $22.3 billion and international equity ETFs at $17.4 billion.

On a year-to-date basis, the ordering is slightly different: U.S. equity ETFs are in the lead with $152.2 billion of inflows, followed by international equity ETFs at $100 billion and U.S. fixed income ETFs at $53.7 billion.

Shortening Duration

April’s top inflows list was chock-full of the usual low cost, broad market ETFs. The Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI), the Vanguard S&P 500 ETF (VOO) and the Vanguard Short-Term Treasury Index ETF (VGSH) each picked up more than $2.4 billion of new assets during the month.

VGSH exemplified the move into short-dated fixed income securities during April. As a short-term Treasury ETF, VGSH doesn’t have as much interest rate risk as some other fixed income ETFs, a characteristic that investors might find appealing in an environment where rates have been climbing upward.

With asset prices elevated across the board, something like VGSH could also act as a place to park cash for investors interested in lightening up on risk.

‘TLT’ Struggles

The inflows into VGSH contrast with the $2.1 billion pulled from the iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT). The fund has struggled this year, losing 12% of its value as rates have jumped. In its April FOMC meeting, the Fed remained committed to keeping its benchmark rate near zero and its asset purchases at their current levels.

But many investors believe the central bank will start to pare back its stimulus measures if the economy keeps booming. TLT is among the most interest-rate-sensitive bond ETFs, making it particularly vulnerable to a rate spike.

Joining TLT on the top outflows list for April were the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY), the iShares Russell 2000 ETF (IWM), the ProShares UltraPro QQQ (TQQQ) and the SPDR Gold Trust (GLD).

For a full list of the top inflows and outflows for April and 2021 as a whole, see the tables below:

 

Top Gainers (April 2021)

Ticker

Name

Issuer

Net Flows ($,mm)

AUM ($M)

% of AUM

YTD 2021 Net Flows($,M)

VTI

Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF

Vanguard

4,176.79

240,609.77

1.74%

13,920.91

VOO

Vanguard S&P 500 ETF

Vanguard

3,219.85

220,344.19

1.46%

20,291.96

VGSH

Vanguard Short-Term Treasury Index ETF

Vanguard

2,401.25

12,554.09

19.13%

2,736.67

BND

Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF

Vanguard

2,363.86

73,844.35

3.20%

8,032.17

IVV

iShares Core S&P 500 ETF

Blackrock

2,217.00

277,912.32

0.80%

10,975.70

VTV

Vanguard Value ETF

Vanguard

2,161.71

77,272.50

2.80%

6,803.47

AGG

iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF

Blackrock

2,068.09

86,948.47

2.38%

4,458.64

SCHD

Schwab U.S. Dividend Equity ETF

Charles Schwab

1,788.70

23,465.61

7.62%

4,411.23

GOVT

iShares U.S. Treasury Bond ETF

Blackrock

1,759.38

16,198.56

10.86%

2,175.61

BBEU

JPMorgan BetaBuilders Europe ETF

JPMorgan Chase

1,655.06

6,313.26

26.22%

2,485.87

 

Top Gainers (Year-to-Date)

Ticker

Name

Issuer

Net Flows ($,mm)

AUM ($M)

% of AUM

April 2021 Net Flows($,M)

VOO

Vanguard S&P 500 ETF

Vanguard

20,291.96

220,344.19

9.21%

3,219.85

VTI

Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF

Vanguard

13,920.91

240,609.77

5.79%

4,176.79

IVV

iShares Core S&P 500 ETF

Blackrock

10,975.70

277,912.32

3.95%

2,217.00

XLF

Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund

State Street Global Advisors

9,381.04

40,563.04

23.13%

274.49

BND

Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF

Vanguard

8,032.17

73,844.35

10.88%

2,363.86

IEMG

iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF

Blackrock

7,549.71

81,272.05

9.29%

115.55

ARKK

ARK Innovation ETF

ARK

7,513.60

24,427.34

30.76%

1,029.67

IUSB

iShares Core Total USD Bond Market ETF

Blackrock

6,889.61

12,654.39

54.44%

492.00

VTV

Vanguard Value ETF

Vanguard

6,803.47

77,272.50

8.80%

2,161.71

XLE

Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund

State Street Global Advisors

5,198.19

23,548.29

22.07%

643.81

 

Biggest Losers (April 2021)

Ticker

Name

Issuer

Net Flows ($,mm)

AUM ($M)

% of AUM

YTD 2021 Net Flows($,M)

SPY

SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust

State Street Global Advisors

-2,601.40

360,922.32

-0.72%

-5,395.78

IWM

iShares Russell 2000 ETF

Blackrock

-2,531.21

68,839.81

-3.68%

385.59

TLT

iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF

Blackrock

-2,099.89

12,487.27

-16.82%

-4,360.12

TQQQ

ProShares UltraPro QQQ

ProShares

-1,489.00

11,777.55

-12.64%

127.94

GLD

SPDR Gold Trust

State Street Global Advisors

-1,120.69

57,930.86

-1.93%

-8,637.41

SHV

iShares Short Treasury Bond ETF

Blackrock

-952.61

14,964.55

-6.37%

-2,866.77

XLP

Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR Fund

State Street Global Advisors

-823.07

10,197.15

-8.07%

-3,255.24

USMV

iShares MSCI USA Min Vol Factor ETF

Blackrock

-688.03

28,675.20

-2.40%

-6,269.97

MBB

iShares MBS ETF

Blackrock

-661.14

25,788.17

-2.56%

832.49

EWY

iShares MSCI South Korea ETF

Blackrock

-625.57

7,293.01

-8.58%

-546.42

 

Biggest Losers (Year-to-Date)

Ticker

Name

Issuer

Net Flows ($,mm)

AUM ($M)

% of AUM

April 2021 Net Flows($,M)

LQD

iShares iBoxx USD Investment Grade Corporate Bond ETF

Blackrock

-11,030.51

41,647.98

-26.49%

-592.98

GLD

SPDR Gold Trust

State Street Global Advisors

-8,637.41

57,930.86

-14.91%

-1,120.69

USMV

iShares MSCI USA Min Vol Factor ETF

Blackrock

-6,269.97

28,675.20

-21.87%

-688.03

SPY

SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust

State Street Global Advisors

-5,395.78

360,922.32

-1.49%

-2,601.40

TLT

iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF

Blackrock

-4,360.12

12,487.27

-34.92%

-2,099.89

HYG

iShares iBoxx USD High Yield Corporate Bond ETF

Blackrock

-4,185.35

21,649.41

-19.33%

435.88

XLP

Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR Fund

State Street Global Advisors

-3,255.24

10,197.15

-31.92%

-823.07

QUAL

iShares MSCI USA Quality Factor ETF

Blackrock

-2,872.20

20,568.67

-13.96%

17.46

SHV

iShares Short Treasury Bond ETF

Blackrock

-2,866.77

14,964.55

-19.16%

-952.61

JNK

SPDR Bloomberg Barclays High Yield Bond ETF

State Street Global Advisors

-2,115.45

10,427.10

-20.29%

-1.71

 

Asset Classes (April 2021)

 

Net Flows ($, mm)

AUM ($, mm)

% of AUM

U.S. Equity

31,819.44

3,640,649.31

0.87%

International Equity

17,381.23

1,240,730.21

1.40%

U.S. Fixed Income

22,347.68

1,004,146.78

2.23%

International Fixed Income

4,285.64

134,655.28

3.18%

Commodities

-841.93

133,740.16

-0.63%

Currency

-134.71

1,767.41

-7.62%

Leveraged

-2,145.22

57,543.09

-3.73%

Inverse

425.68

10,851.46

3.92%

Asset Allocation

590.73

15,624.58

3.78%

Alternatives

520.29

6,318.87

8.23%

Total:

74,248.83

6,246,027.16

1.19%

 

Asset Classes (Year-to-Date)

 

Net Flows ($, mm)

AUM ($, mm)

% of AUM

U.S. Equity

152,159.37

3,640,649.31

4.18%

International Equity

100,042.18

1,240,730.21

8.06%

U.S. Fixed Income

53,663.03

1,004,146.78

5.34%

International Fixed Income

13,952.75

134,655.28

10.36%

Commodities

-6,591.19

133,740.16

-4.93%

Currency

-129.29

1,767.41

-7.32%

Leveraged

1,526.28

57,543.09

2.65%

Inverse

2,340.90

10,851.46

21.57%

Asset Allocation

1,592.80

15,624.58

10.19%

Alternatives

1,741.24

6,318.87

27.56%

Total:

320,298.07

6,246,027.16

5.13%

 

April 2021 ETF Issuer League Table

Issuer

Net Flows ($,M)

AUM ($,M)

% of AUM

YTD 2021 Net Flows($,M)

Blackrock

17,561.80

2,238,851.76

0.78%

61,537.30

Vanguard

28,462.53

1,658,653.83

1.72%

114,120.41

State Street Global Advisors

5,562.84

949,398.00

0.59%

23,979.75

Invesco

1,870.45

337,574.29

0.55%

18,169.35

Charles Schwab

4,988.53

234,892.65

2.12%

15,707.24

First Trust

2,373.78

123,073.83

1.93%

8,684.38

Vanguard Group, Inc.

1,197.17

98,564.87

1.21%

3,708.83

JPMorgan Chase

2,881.68

60,229.39

4.78%

12,167.21

Van Eck Associates Corp.

1,351.94

58,432.22

2.31%

3,867.60

ProShares

-781.30

54,708.81

-1.43%

3,507.15

ARK

1,562.25

50,560.29

3.09%

17,612.69

WisdomTree

217.07

43,720.24

0.50%

1,514.51

Mirae Asset

1,738.84

31,647.59

5.49%

9,382.29

Fidelity

626.37

28,183.06

2.22%

2,129.13

PIMCO

555.62

27,082.91

2.05%

1,246.43

Direxion

-761.57

24,797.54

-3.07%

1,395.29

Goldman Sachs

-186.07

23,143.81

-0.80%

-533.91

Deutsche Bank

202.17

21,461.84

0.94%

197.59

Northern Trust

422.11

17,508.87

2.41%

1,654.60

CICC

1,162.74

9,854.52

11.80%

3,624.38

Franklin Templeton

166.72

9,180.69

1.82%

200.64

SS&C

-1.50

9,145.98

-0.02%

346.20

ETFMG

123.26

7,408.16

1.66%

1,103.76

Exchange Traded Concepts

85.35

6,841.99

1.25%

963.98

Aberdeen Standard Investments

31.63

6,835.35

0.46%

295.97

Pacer Advisors

176.61

6,703.53

2.63%

364.93

Victory Capital

-184.27

6,319.42

-2.92%

76.53

American Century Investments

514.91

6,037.71

8.53%

1,602.77

Grace Partners of Dupage LP

47.51

5,080.39

0.94%

519.37

Innovator

204.06

4,941.81

4.13%

662.23

John Hancock

49.96

4,938.67

1.01%

-714.12

Amplify Investments

126.41

4,873.81

2.59%

1,317.51

Principal

440.29

4,831.58

9.11%

590.32

US Commodity Funds

-165.06

4,476.75

-3.69%

-1,635.77

New York Life

-272.82

4,319.75

-6.32%

278.17

Janus Henderson

10.57

4,172.48

0.25%

233.94

US Global Investors

-36.19

3,986.92

-0.91%

473.75

The Hartford

-22.90

3,907.08

-0.59%

31.56

Nuveen Securities

148.72

3,795.01

3.92%

829.15

Barclays Capital Inc.

401.35

3,258.81

12.32%

1,302.25

BMO

0.00

2,738.29

0.00%

248.36

AdvisorShares

42.46

2,266.30

1.87%

1,224.79

Toroso Investments

-20.20

1,979.21

-1.02%

406.27

O’Shares Investments

-0.12

1,595.42

-0.01%

45.18

Prudential

73.69

1,557.98

4.73%

178.91

Columbia Management Investment Advisers, LLC

52.51

1,521.98

3.45%

256.96

Vident

-3.13

1,499.37

-0.21%

-3.91

GraniteShares

38.76

1,453.15

2.67%

144.06

Defiance ETFs

69.55

1,431.96

4.86%

344.72

Davis Advisers

13.36

1,332.99

1.00%

71.60

Dimensional Holdings

174.76

1,265.37

13.81%

794.78

Aptus Capital Advisors

45.65

1,188.02

3.84%

160.60

Virtus Investment Partners

83.55

1,148.78

7.27%

180.24

UBS

-13.56

1,071.25

-1.27%

-36.26

Cambria

-11.31

1,015.36

-1.11%

114.72

Credit Suisse Group AG

41.94

949.42

4.42%

183.52

EMPIRICAL FINANCE LLC

15.50

939.21

1.65%

208.59

Main Management

27.38

929.28

2.95%

182.42

Inspire

23.16

911.16

2.54%

100.61

Transamerica Funds

0.00

792.55

0.00%

-29.97

BNY Mellon

41.70

778.02

5.36%

226.18

Renaissance Capital

-41.67

698.15

-5.97%

-53.07

Roundhill Investments

-20.08

671.98

-2.99%

322.38

Nationwide

22.32

647.26

3.45%

129.81

The Motley Fool

0.95

645.88

0.15%

57.14

Tortoise

26.14

526.45

4.97%

40.58

Strategy Shares

102.49

503.72

20.35%

279.04

Timothy Plan

7.66

451.98

1.69%

11.16

Merk

0.03

448.62

0.01%

35.91

TrimTabs

53.49

436.25

12.26%

39.60

SRN Advisors

14.89

403.83

3.69%

77.84

Teucrium

-12.62

389.05

-3.24%

5.69

Sprott, Inc.

-2.99

382.95

-0.78%

17.77

Al Marketing LLC

-2.40

370.83

-0.65%

-19.98

Howard Capital Management

12.10

355.34

3.40%

31.39

Distillate Capital

10.98

346.12

3.17%

92.93

Liquid Strategies

13.17

341.13

3.86%

35.71

Horizon Kinetics LLC

184.05

331.63

55.50%

311.47

Regents Park Funds

24.89

325.73

7.64%

55.35

Redwood Investment Management

-34.11

325.36

-10.48%

-125.44

ClearShares LLC

34.68

312.76

11.09%

34.65

WBI

-6.78

304.12

-2.23%

-42.64

Swedish Export Credit

21.86

287.81

7.59%

9.06

Simplify Asset Management Inc.

7.52

275.13

2.73%

143.46

T. Rowe Price Group, Inc.

24.54

263.44

9.32%

91.11

Tuttle Tactical Management, LLC

-15.73

259.66

-6.06%

105.23

OBP Capital LLC

1.31

244.00

0.54%

116.87

Donald L. Hagan LLC

38.10

221.61

17.19%

64.64

EntrepreneurShares, LLC

-1.27

188.45

-0.67%

1.96

Intangible Capital

0.00

185.52

0.00%

-0.02

Core Alternative Capital

7.25

169.24

4.28%

24.04

Little Harbor Advisors

14.38

149.03

9.65%

82.22

Cboe Vest Financial LLC

34.09

146.58

23.25%

48.95

ProcureAM

-2.99

133.31

-2.24%

81.50

TrueMark Investments

9.48

122.99

7.70%

47.76

Syntax Advisors

0.00

116.80

0.00%

19.79

Gadsden

1.29

112.93

1.14%

9.92

Arrow Funds

0.00

112.50

0.00%

0.56

AGF

2.99

107.01

2.80%

-15.13

Wahed Invest LLC

8.20

102.85

7.98%

28.25

CornerCap Investment Counsel, Inc.

-0.01

100.58

-0.01%

27.47

Exponential ETFs

-0.29

96.84

-0.30%

1.20

Kingsview Partners LLC

5.74

85.94

6.68%

80.23

Wainwright, Inc.

54.16

75.44

71.79%

70.30

Pettee Investors

7.84

70.31

11.15%

17.76

Humankind USA LLC

9.31

66.75

13.95%

59.78

Natixis

3.80

64.11

5.92%

10.41

Change Finance

6.23

62.60

9.95%

23.85

Metaurus Advisors

0.98

61.87

1.58%

3.45

Advisors Asset Management

0.21

59.14

0.35%

9.52

Pacific Life

-0.11

57.15

-0.19%

-0.11

Impact Shares

10.30

56.46

18.24%

16.81

iM Square SAS

3.57

56.01

6.38%

-3.26

Beyond Investing

1.89

49.80

3.79%

8.99

Esoterica

-3.77

49.10

-7.68%

27.87

Absolute Investment Advisers LLC

0.00

47.81

-0.01%

7.09

Toews Corp.

0.00

44.71

0.00%

-4.51

Infusive Asset Management

0.00

44.02

0.00%

5.04

Highland Capital Management

0.02

43.56

0.04%

-9.77

Emles Advisors LLC

0.00

42.08

0.00%

-26.65

Premise Capital

-5.61

39.69

-14.12%

-13.27

Cabot ETF Partners LLC

-0.89

39.63

-2.25%

34.22

Swan Global Investments

3.87

35.82

10.80%

32.72

Neil Azous Revocable Trust

6.46

35.64

18.13%

14.72

Red Gate Advisers LLC

2.80

33.11

8.45%

5.01

Truist

1.39

29.95

4.65%

7.41

ETF Series Solutions

1.30

29.25

4.44%

2.48

MCCM Group LLC

-1.99

27.95

-7.12%

36.38

Guinness Atkinson Asset Management

0.37

27.37

1.36%

13.33

AlphaMark Advisors

0.00

26.35

0.00%

-1.41

Alger Group Holdings LLC

7.43

22.08

33.65%

15.93

Inverdale Capital Management LLC

5.12

21.02

24.36%

15.53

WisdomTree Investments, Inc.

0.00

18.62

0.00%

18.05

2nd Vote Value Investments, Inc

10.74

17.70

60.67%

11.42

Changebridge Capital LLC

0.56

17.10

3.25%

9.49

Gotham Asset Management Holdings

12.39

15.77

78.54%

13.41

The Leuthold Group LLC

-0.75

14.28

-5.28%

0.68

GAMCO Investors, Inc.

0.92

12.67

7.25%

6.46

Rayliant Investment Research

1.97

12.64

15.57%

10.14

Counterpoint Mutual Funds LLC

0.00

11.45

0.00%

-1.20

Point Bridge Capital

0.88

10.76

8.14%

-0.83

EquBot

0.00

10.13

0.00%

3.34

Alternative Access Funds LLC

0.00

10.03

0.00%

0.00

Mairs & Power, Inc.

2.00

9.82

20.40%

9.75

Whitford Asset Management

6.20

9.43

65.70%

6.20

Ridgeline Research LLC

2.31

7.87

29.39%

4.45

New Age Alpha Advisors LLC

2.83

6.52

43.33%

4.77

Water Island Capital Partners LP

0.00

6.50

0.01%

0.00

Global Beta Advisors

0.58

5.05

11.49%

-2.99

Reflection Asset Management, LLC

0.00

3.27

0.00%

0.59

Wilshire Phoenix Funds LLC

0.00

1.78

0.00%

0.00

Democracy Investment Management LLC

0.64

1.30

49.07%

0.64

Eaton Vance Corp.

0.00

0.00

0.00%

0.00

 

Disclaimer: All data as of 6 a.m. Eastern time the date the article is published. Data is believed to be accurate; however, transient market data is often subject to subsequent revision and correction by the exchanges.

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