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Thursday, November 14, 2019

An ETF Strategist Takes the Lead

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

An ETF strategist took the lead last month among the smallest fund firms.

Robbie Cannon
Horizon Investments
President, CEO
This article draws from Morningstar Direct data on October 2019 open-end mutual fund and ETF flows, excluding money-market funds and funds of funds. More specifically, this article focuses on the 504 firms (four fewer than in September) with less than $1 billion each in fund AUM. 214 of those firms gained net inflows last month.

Horizon Investments took the pole position last month, bringing in an estimated $257 million in net October inflows, up from $9 million in September. Other big October winners included: Aware, $131 million (up from negligible net outflows); Howard Capital Management, $79 million (up from $18 million in net outflows; newcomer Overlay Shares, $67 million; and Catholic Investor, $50 million (up from $2 million).

Proportionately, setting aside apparent newcomers, Cadence Capital Management led the micro fund firm pack last month, with estimated net October inflows equivalent to 56.61 percent of its AUM, up from negligible net flows in September. Other big October winners included: Horizon, 50.74 percent (up from 3.82 percent); Aware, 46.41 percent (up from 0.01 percent in net outflows); DDJ, 34.31 percent (up from 31.9 percent); and North Capital, 33.08 percent (up from 0.04 percent).

Overlay and Levin Easterly were apparent newcomer fund families in October.

On the flip side, October was a rough month for Highland, which suffered an estimated $71 million in net outflows, more than any other sub-$1-billion-AUM fund firm and up from $18 million in September. Other big October sufferers included: HSBC, $66 million (up from $9 million); Rational's Strategy Shares, $55 million (up from $23 million); Power Mutual Funds, $45 million (up from $25 million); and RYZZ Capital Management, $39 million (up from $1 million).

Proportionately, RYZZ suffered the most last month, with estimated net October outflows equivalent to 1,699.33 percent of its AUM (i.e. its outflows were 17 times the AUM it had left over afterwards), up from 1.39 percent in September. Other big October sufferers included: CVR, 1,547.41 percent (up from 136.43 percent); Linde Hansen, 268.94 percent (up from 10.89 percent); AlphaOne, 157.57 percent (up from 4.17 percent); and M-CAM, 99.48 percent (down from 0.55 percent in net inflows).

As a group, the 504 fund firms with less than $1 billion each in fund AUM brought in about $453 million in net October inflows, equivalent to about 0.5 percent of their combined AUM and up from $505 million in net September outflows. Micro fund firms accounted for an estimated 1.56 percent of net industry inflows in October.

Across the whole industry (M* tracks flows from 765 firms, down from 767 in September), long-term mutual funds and ETFs brought in $28.974 billion in net inflows in October, equivalent to 0.15 percent of industry AUM. That's down from $39.916 billion in net September inflows. Passive funds brought in $38.42 billion in net October inflows (down from $52.576 billion), while active funds suffered $9.446 billion in net outflows (down from $12.66 billion). 

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