ASX-listed ETFs

Interesting data for total ASX ETF net flows across asset classes of 2021 so far

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Investors in ASX-listed ETFs have continued to pile into international equities this year, according to a BetaShares report published last week.

International share funds captured a whopping A$2.8 billion of the total A$6 billion or so of net ETF flows on the ASX for the calendar year to 30 April 2021, the analysis by the Sydney-headquartered BetaShares showed.

Over A$1 billion of the international equities influx flowed to developed world ETFs followed by sector funds (A$700 million) and ethical products (about A$350 million).BetaShares ethical funds have captured around 80% of total ethical asset class ETF flows, over the four-month period.

Leading the international suite with approximately $200 million each in net flows are the following three ETFs, according to the report: Vanguard MSCI Index International Shares ETF (ASX: VGS), BetaShares Global Sustainability Leaders ETF (ASX: ETHI), BetaShares NASDAQ 100 ETF (ASX: NDQ).

ASX ETFs
(Source: ASX)

“With younger investors becoming more educated about ethical options within the ETF universe, and companies increasingly making the shift to becoming carbon neutral, ethical ETFs have seen a significant rise in demand, resulting in strong inflows across the board,” the report says.

Australian equities ETFs garnered almost A$1.5 billion in net flows for the year to April 30 followed by A$900 million or so into fixed income funds, following a tough year for bond markets in 2020.

“When considering Australian equities flows, there is one clear observation – broad market exposures continue to dominate, with just over $1.2 billion in net flows,” the BetaShares report says. “Within broad market equities, passive ETFs tracking the ASX 200 and ASX 300 were the clear winners, making up $1.1 billion of total broad market Australian equity flows.”

As at 31 May 2021, BetaShares manages over A$18 billion in assets. The fund manager introduced a range of products into the Australian ETF landscape, including Australia’s first currency hedged ETF, Australia’s first range of commodity ETFs, Australia’s first range of currency ETFs, Australia’s first ETF using fundamentally based indexes and a range of short exchange traded products.

The firm is projecting strong growth to continue, and earlier this month announced expansion into New Zealand.

Thom Bentley has been hired as Director of Adviser and Institutional Business and will be located in the firm’s a newly opened Auckland office. Bentley has more than 30 years’ financial services experience and most recently worked at Smartshares, New Zealand’s only ETF manager, where he was responsible for institutional business.