Industry Updates

Which ETFs saw the biggest inflows and outflows in Q3?

CSPX inflows of $1.5bn is a record for September

Theo Andrew

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BlackRock accounted for all five of the top asset-gathering ETFs in Q3 while value tilted ETFs accounted for the largest outflows over the quarter as investors took profits following significant outperformance since November 2020. 

Topping the charts was the iShares Core MSCI World UCITS ETF (IWDA) with inflows of over $3.2bn for the three months to the end of September while the iShares Core S&P 500 UCITS ETF (CSPX) followed closely behind increasing its assets under management by $2.7bn, according to data from ETFLogic. 

In fact, CSPX set a record for September inflows as investors poured $1.5bn into the ETF, according to data from Bloomberg Intelligence.  

Next came the iShares MSCI USA Momentum ESG UCITS ETF (IUME), which recorded $1.5bn over the quarter, however, this was mainly due to a rotation out of its non-ESG counterpart, the iShares Edge MSCI USA Momentum Factor UCITS ETF (IUMF), which conversely recorded the fourth largest outflows in Q3.  

The swing came in July and has been part of a broader trend in the European asset allocation where investors switch out of their core exposures to ESG equivalents.  

Flows into the iShares Core € Corp Bond UCITS ETF (IEAC) followed closely behind IUME achieving $1.4bn inflows over the period.  

On the outflows side, the $3.5bn iShares Edge MSCI Value Factor UCITS ETF (IUVF) recorded an asset exodus of $2.6bn over the past three months. However, roughly $1.4bn of this was an institutional switch into its mirror ESG strategy – the iShares MSCI USA Value Factor ESG UCITS ETF (IUVE) – meaning net outflows for IUVF stand at $1.2bn since July.  

It was another value-tilted ETF, the Xtrackers S&P 500 Equal Weight UCITS ETF (XDEW) which topped the outflow pile, recording roughly $1.7bn in Q3 despite emerging signs value may again find favour.  

A note from Research Affiliates published last week said renewed economic growth in emerging markets could be the catalyst for another cyclical shift into value. 

The iShares MSCI World Small Cap UCITS ETF (WSML) also posted $1.7bn of outflows with the Lyxor S&P 500 UCITS ETF (LSPX) finishing off the top five with $984m outflows.  

A late exodus from the emerging market (EM) bonds could not push any EM debt funds into the top five, despite leadings EM ETFs – including the iShares J.P. Morgan EM Local Govt Bond UCITS ETF (IEML) and the iShares J.P. Morgan $ EM Bond UCITS ETF (JPEA) – clocking up roughly $900m outflows in the final week of September. 

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