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Rating:Small Fund Firms Almost Turned It Around Last Year Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Friday, January 17, 2020

Small Fund Firms Almost Turned It Around Last Year

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

Small fund firms' outflows fell by more than 90 percent last year.

This article draws from Morningstar Direct data on December 2019 (and full-year 2019) ETF and open-end mutual fund flows, excluding money-market funds and funds of funds. More specifically, this article focused on the 151 firms (one fewer than in November) with between $1 billion and $10 billion each in fund AUM. 68 of those firms gained net inflows last month, up from 59 in November.

Morningstar's own funds kept the lead again, thanks to an estimated $2.127 billion in net 2019 inflows, up from $947 million in 2018. Other big 2019 inflows winners included: Pacer, $1.757 billion (up from $1.741 billion); Polen Capital, $1.561 billion (up from $721 million); PT Asset Management, $1.417 billion (up from $647 million); and Mercer, $1.37 billion (up from $67 million).

M* also led the small funds firms pack proportionately, thanks to estimated 2019 net inflows equivalent to 64.4 percent of its AUM, down from 102.8 percent in 2018. Other big 2019 inflows winners included: GQG, 46.6 percent (down from 64 percent); Fuller & Thaler, 45 percent (down from 74.2 percent); AAM, 39.9 percent (up form 28.6 percent); and PTAM, 39 percent (up from 31 percent).

The picture looked different in December. Mercer brought in an estimated $1.023 billion in net inflows, more than any other small fund firm and up from $302 million in November. Other big December inflows winners included: Catalyst, $200 million (up from negligible net flows); Pear Tree, $188 million (up from $19 million in net outflows); Pacific Funds, $172 million (up from $34 million).

Mercer also led the December small fund firm flows pack proportionately, with estimated net inflows equivalent to 11.7 percent of its AUM (up from four percent). Other big December inflows winners included: LoCorr, 7.8 percent (up from 0.4 percent in net outflows); PFM, 5.2 percent (up from 1.1 percent); KraneShares, 4.9 percent (up from 1.9 percent in outflows); and Sempir, four percent (up from 3.1 percent).

On the flip side, 2019 was a rough year for Robeco's Boston Partners, which suffered an estimated $3.298 billion in net outflows, more than any other small fund firm and up from $1.694 billion in 2018. Other big 2019 outflows sufferers included: IVA, $2.33 billion (up from $1.813 billion); Westwood, $1.678 billion (up from $704 million); Royce, $1.449 billion (up from $2.122 billion); and Manning & Napier, $1.28 billion (up from $1.004 billion).

Proportionately, Westwood led the small fund firm outflows pack last year, suffering estimated net 2019 outflows equivalent to 81.6 percent of its AUM, up from 21.7 percent in 2018. Other big 2019 outflows sufferers included: Chartwell, 49 percent (up from 11 percent); Stone Harbor, 46.9 percent (up 1.8 percent); Boston Partners, 46.6 percent (up from 18.5 percent); and Third Avenue, 43.1 percent (up from 34.7 percent).

In December alone, IVA suffered an estimated $439 million in net outflows, more than any other small fund firm and up from $174 million in net November inflows. Other big December outflows sufferers included: Ostwerwise, $261 million (up from $89 million); Boston Partners, $204 million (up from $129 million); Southeastern Asset Management's Longleaf, $191 million (up from $169 million); and Royce, $187 million (down from $110 million).

Proportionately, Westwood led the small fund firm outflows pack last month, suffering estimated net December outflows equivalent to 8.4 percent of its AUM, up from 5.8 percent in November. Other big December outflows sufferers included: Third Avenue, 6.8 percent (up from 2.9 percent); AssetMark's GuideMark and Guidepath, 6.8 percent (up from 0.1 percent); MainGate, 6.7 percent (up from 4.1 percent; and RMB, 6.2 percent (up from 1.4 percent).

As a group, the 151 small fund firms suffered an estimated $1.139 billion in net 2019 outflows, equivalent to about 0.24 percent of their combined AUM. That's down from $12.188 billion and 2.49 percent in 2018.

For December alone, those same small fund firms suffered an estimated $1 million in combined net outflows, down from $273 million in November.

Across the entire industry, the 773 fund firms tracked by M* brought in a combined $419.312 billion in net inflows into long-term mutual funds and ETFs in 2019, equivalent to 2.02 percent of industry AUM. That's up from $162.401 billion in 2018. 353 firms generated net 2019 inflows.

In December alone, the industry brought in an estimated $67.673 billion in net inflows, equivalent to 0.33 percent of industry AUM and up from $55.224 billion in November. Passive funds brought in an estimated $72.573 billion in net inflows in December (up from $55.119 billion in November), while active funds suffered $5.009 billion in net outflows (down from $105 million in net inflows). 

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