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Friday, March 19, 2021

Micro Firms' Inflows Rise Ninefold

Reported by Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

The smallest fund firms' net inflows are up more than ninefold year-over-year, and their marketshare of overall industry inflows is up 65 percent, too. Yet their AUM marketshare is down 17 percent.

Will Hershey
Roundhill Financial, Inc. (dba Roundhill Investments)
Co-Founder, CEO
This article draws from Morningstar Direct data on February 2021 open-end mutual fund and ETF flows, excluding money-market funds and funds of funds. More specifically, this article focuses on the 480 firms (up from 479 in January 2021 but down from 513 in February 2020) with less than $1 billion each in long-term fund AUM.

263 of those micro fund firms brought in estimated net inflows last month, up from 261 in January 2021 and 240 in February 2020. Micro fund firms accounted for an estimated 0.38 percent of long-term mutual fund and ETF AUM as of February 28, 2021, roughly the same market share they had on January 31, 2021 but down from 0.46 percent at the end of February 2020.

Roundhill Financial took the lead last month among micro fund firms, thanks to an estimated $180 million in February 2021 inflows, up month-over-month from $106 million in January 2021 and up year-over-year from $1 million in February 2020 outflows. Other big February 2021 inflows winners included: Chiron Investment Management, $81 million (up MOM from $40 million, up YOY from $106 million in net outflows); Absolute Strategies, $76 million (up MOM from $71MM, up YOY from $8 million); Horizon Kinetics, $59 million (up from MOM from $18 million); and Jacob, $53 million (up MOM from $17 million, up YOY from $1 million in net outflows).

Last month included two apparent newcomers: Advisors Capital and Humankind.

As of the end of February 2021, Roundhill also led the YTD micro inflows pack with $286 million. Other big YTD inflows winners included: Absolute Strategies, $147 million; Renaissance Capital, $142 million; Chiron, $121 million; and Axonic, $117 million.

On the flip side, last month was a rough one for Muzinich, which led the micro pack thanks to an estimated $156 million in net February 2021 outflows, up MOM from $133 million and down YOY from $37 million in net inflows. Other big February 2021 outflows sufferers included: MainGate Trust, $85 million (up MOM from $29 million, down YOY from $44 million in net inflows); Horizon Investments, $82 million (down MOM from $7 million in net inflows, down YOY from $16 million in net inflows); Summit Global Investments, $41 million (up MOM from $10 million, down YOY from $11 million in net inflows); and KKM, $18 million (down MOM from $1 million in net inflows, up YOY from negligible outflows).

In the first two months of 2021, Schroder led the micro pack thanks to an estimated $309 million in net YTD outflows. Other big YTD outflows sufferers included: Muzinich, $288 million; MainGate, $114 million; Horizon Investments, $75 million; and HSBC, $72 million.

As a group, micro firms brought in an estimated $1.309 billion in net February 2021 inflows, equivalent to 1.43 percent of their combined AUM and accounting for 0.91 percent of all industry long-term inflows. That's up from $900 million and 1 percent of AUM, but down from 0.94 percent of industry inflows. And it's up from $140 million, 0.15 percent of AUM, and 0.55 percent of industry inflows.

In the first two months of 2021, micro fund firms brought in an estimated $2.068 billion in net inflows, equivalent to 2.26 percent of their combined AUM and accounting for 0.86 percent of net industry inflows.

Across the entire industry, the 753 firms (down from 769 in February 2020) tracked by the M* team brought in a combined $144.457 billion in estimated net long-term fund inflows in February 2021, equivalent to 0.6 percent of long-term fund AUM. That's up from $95.454 billion and 0.4 percent of AUM in January 2021, and it's up from $27.108 billion and 0.13 percent of AUM in February 2020.

Active funds brought in an estimated $53.109 billion in net February 2021 inflows, up from $40.836 billion in January 2021 and up from $11.675 billion in February 2020. Passive funds brought in an estimated $91.347 billion in net February 2021 inflows, up from $54.591 billion in January 2021 and up from $13.784 billion in February 2020.

YTD, long-term funds have brought in an estimated $239.71 billion in net inflows, equivalent to 0.99 percent of their combined AUM. 

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