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Thursday, December 17, 2020

Defiance Takes the Lead

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

A Gotham ETF startup took the lead last month among the smallest fund firms.

This article draws from Morningstar Direct data on November 2020 open-end mutual fund and ETF flows, excluding money-market funds and funds-of-funds. More specifically, this article focuses on the 481 firms (down from 490 in October) with less than $1 billion each in long-term fund AUM. 218 of those firms gained net inflows in November (up from 197 in October), and 211 gained net year-to-date inflows as of the end of November.

Defiance ETFs took the micro firm lead last month, thanks to an estimated $101 million in net November inflows, up from $84 million in October Other big November inflows winners included: Renaissance Capital, $98 million (up from $84 million); Advisors Preferred, $73 million (down from $96 million); Toroso, $62 million (up from $32 million); and Aristotle, $59 million (up from $23 million).

Last month included three apparent newcomers: 2nd Vote Funds, Changebridge, and Leatherback.

YTD, as of the end of November, Toroso still leads the micro firm pack thanks to an estimated $802 million in net inflows. Other big YTD inflows winners included: Axonic, $637 million; Defiance, $499 million; Aptus Capital Advisors, $440 million; and Rational Funds, $428 million.

On the flip side, November was a rough month for SRN Advisors, which suffered an estimated $231 million in net outflows, more than any other micro fund firm and up from negligible net outflows in October. Other big November outflows sufferers included: Ryan Labs, $56 million (up from $20 million); Walthausen Funds, $48 million (up from $2 million); AXS, $47 million (up from $15 million); and Horizon Investments, $440 million (up from $9 million).

YTD as of the end of November, Chiron still led the micro pack with an estimated $727 million in net outflows in 2020. Other big YTD outflows sufferers included: Schroder, $710 million; Phaecian, $449 million; Highland, $358 million; and 361, $309 million.

As a group, micro fund firms brought in an estimated $6 million in net November inflows, equivalent to 0.01 percent of their combined AUM and accounting for 0.01 percent of overall industry inflows. That's up from $45 million in net October outflows. YTD, micro firms suffered $627 million in net outflows.

Across the entire industry, the 747 fund firms (down from 756 in October) tracked by the M* team brought in an estimated $112.028 billion in net November inflows, up from $15.64 billion in October. Active fund firms brought in an estimated $16.857 billion in net November inflows, while passive funds brought in $95.171 billion in net inflows. YTD, long-term funds and ETFs have brought in an estimated $128.103 billion in net inflows. 

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