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Tuesday, May 1, 2018

First Trust's Inflows Double

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

March was a big month for First Trust, which jumped to the top of the midsize fund firm pack.

The fund flows information within this article draws from Morningstar Direct data. This article digs into mutual fund and ETF flows for March 2018.

First Trust brought in an estimated $1.649 billion in net inflows in March, more than any other fund family with between $10 billion and $100 billion in AUM and nearly double the $881 million it landed in February. Other top inflow shops in March included: Baird, $1.27 billion (up from $866 million in February); Eaton Vance, $981 million (up from $679 million); Edward Jones' Bridge Builder, $859 million (down from $1.023 billion); and Guggenheim, $828 million (up from $684 million in outflows).

First Trust also led the midsize fund firms on a relative basis, with estimated net inflows in March equivalent to 2.83 percent of its AUM. Other big inflows winners proportionately include: Baird, 2.8 percent; Guggenheim, 2.46 percent; Credit Suisse, 1.99 percent; and Edgewood, 1.87 percent.

On the flip side, March was another rough month for Harbor, which jumped to the lead in the midsize pack with $1.518 billion in estimated net outflows, up from $1.16 billion in February. Other big sufferers in March included: New York Life's MainStay, $909 million (down from $1.268 billion in February); DWS, $797 million (down from $749 million); Wells Fargo, $714 million (down from $1.95 billion); and WisdomTree, $631 million (down from $811 million).

Proportionately, Royce was the biggest sufferer in March among midsize fund firms, with estimated net outflows equivalent to 3.57 percent of its AUM. Other big sufferers last month, proportionately, included: Harbor, 2.3 percent; MainStay, 1.69 percent; FMI, 1.57 percent; and DWS, 1.56 percent.

As a group, fund families with between $10 billion and $100 billion in AUM brought in an estimated $609 million in net inflows in March, equivalent to about 0.02 percent of their combined AUM. That's up from $966 million in net outflows in February.

M* recently released a report about industrywide flows, with a familiar new author, and MFWire highlighted the biggest winners and losers among the largest fund firms. Across the whole industry, long-term active mutual funds brought in an estimated $1.178 billion in net inflows in March, while money funds suffered $54.264 billion in net outflows and passive funds brought in $12.178 billion in net inflows. Within long-term active funds, taxable bond funds international equity funds, muni bond funds, liquid alts, and commodities all had net inflows, while U.S. equity funds, allocation funds, and sector equity funds suffered net outflows. 

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