Barclays Global Investors reports that the combined assets of the global exchange-traded funds, or ETFs, hit an all-time high of $891B in August 2009, with investors getting more confident about the industry as a low cost, transparent and liquid tool to access global equity and commodity markets,
ETFs assets rose 3.9% above the previous all time high of $858B set in July 2009, and 10.6% above the high set in April 2008, latest figures from Barclays show. The global ETF industry had 1,773 ETFs with 3,137 listings, assets of $891B from 95 providers on 41 exchanges at the end of August 2009. Year to date assets have risen by 25.3 per cent, said Deborah Fuhr, Global Head of ETF Research & Implementation Strategy at BGI.
“The net inflows of $49.0 bn in the past six months shows demand for ETFs is still growing as clients view ETFs as useful tools to help them implement many types of exposures,” said Fuhr in statement.
Emerging market equity ETFs have seen the largest increase in assets growing by $51.8 billion year-to-date to reach $378.1 billion at the end of August 2009. With 522 listings of which 259 are ETFs, the interest in equities in the emerging markets, are on the rise, leading by 13.8 per cent as of August 2009 and 3.8 per cent year to date, according to BGI.
The global growth in ETFs assets and volumes is partly being driven by professional investors in the Middle East, who are increasingly using ETFs as a low cost, transparent and liquid tool to access global equity, fixed income and commodity markets, said Robert Broadwell, iShares Regional Business Director GCC at BGI. “ We have seen a particular increase in the use of fixed income ETFs by Gulf-based family offices and their financial advisors.”
Globally, iShares is the largest ETF provider in terms of both number of products, 391 ETFs, and assets of $429.32 billion, reflecting 48.2% market share.