Talk about product selection.
According to a recent article published in CNBC.com
, there are some "12,000 different share classes of equity mutual funds and over 6,000 share classes of taxable bond funds," plus another 1,000 equity and nearly 400 taxable bond ETFs.
That's nearly 20,000 products of some sort or another grazing peacefully in '40 Act Country.
And here's the kicker, according to the author of the article, Lipper
senior research analyst Barry Fennell, there's plenty of more products on the horizon.
Now, to be fair, 20,000 is the number for all of the share classes of all of the funds offered in '40 Act Country, but that doesn't belie the obvious fact that there are lots and lots of funds clamoring for investor dollars.
According to MFWire's
databases, there are over 800 firms sponsoring funds in this space, with roughly 50 or so every year coming in, and roughly the same going out.
The ones that are able to survive in this space have some kind of message -- you can call it schtick, we call it value proposition -- that resonates with investors and generates some kind of loyalty for the long haul.
A silly case-in-point, Vanguard
has sent trucks selling cheap coffee into Baltimore (home of T. Rowe)
Gimmick, you may cry. The coffee must be terrible, you'd argue.
Whatever. It shouldn't surprise you that Vanguard has crushingly dominated industry flows for years now. And little, apparently silly details, do help.
What value proposition are you serving investors?
How's your coffee?
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