European Fund-Flow Trends, February 2017
After the negative flow numbers at the end of 2016, February 2017 was the second consecutive month showing a positive picture for long-term mutual funds. European fund promoters enjoyed net inflows into bond funds (+€20.1bn), followed by equity funds (+€12.3bn), mixed-asset funds (+€11.7bn), and alternative UCITS products (+€4.0bn) as well as commodity products (+€0.7bn) and real estate funds (+€0.2bn). The only asset type with net outflows in the long-term investment funds segment was “other” funds (-€1.0bn).
These fund flows added up to overall net inflows of €48.1bn into long-term investment funds for February. Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) contributed €9.4bn to these flows.
Money Market Products
After being the best selling asset type for the last few months, money market products (-€6.6bn) were the asset type with the highest net outflows overall for February. Opposite to the flows into mutual funds investing in money market instruments (-€6.8bn), ETFs investing in these instruments enjoyed net inflows (+€0.2bn).
This flow pattern led the overall fund flows to mutual funds in Europe to net inflows of €41.4bn for February and €130.0bn for 2017 so far.
Money Market Products by Sector
Money Market GBP (+€4.6bn) was the best selling sector overall for February, followed by Money Market Global (+€0.6bn) and Money Market CHF (+€0.02bn). At the other end of the spectrum Money Market USD (-€5.8bn) suffered the highest net outflows of all sectors, bettered somewhat by Money Market EUR (-€5.5bn) and Money Market EUR Leveraged (-€0.3bn). Comparing this flow pattern with the flow pattern for January 2017 shows that European investors decreased their positions in the euro—the best selling money market sector for January—and bought back into the British pound sterling after they had reduced investment in the GBP for January.
Fund Flows by Sectors
Within the segment of long-term mutual funds Equity Global (+€7.4bn) was once again the best selling sector, again followed by Bond Global (+€4.0bn), Bond Emerging Markets Global in Hard Currencies (+€3.7bn), and Mixed Asset CHF Balanced (+€3.2bn) as well as Bond EUR Short Term (+€2.9bn).
At the other end of the spectrum Equity Europe (-€2.8bn) suffered the highest net outflows from long-term mutual funds, bettered somewhat by Bond EUR Corporates (-€2.5bn) and Equity US (-€1.9bn) as well as Bond EUR (-€1.4bn) and Bond EMU Government Short Term (-€1.2bn).
Fund Flows by Markets
Single fund domicile flows (including those to money market products) showed in general a positive picture for February, with 21 of the 34 markets covered in this report showing net inflows and 13 showing net outflows. Ireland (+€16.0bn) was the fund domicile with the highest net inflows, followed by Luxembourg (+€13.3bn), Switzerland (+€5.6bn) the United Kingdom (+€3.5bn), and Germany (+€1.9bn). On the other side of the table France was the single fund domicile with the highest net outflows (-€1.5bn), bettered by Italy (-€1.0bn) and the Netherlands (-€0.4bn).
Within the bond sector, funds domiciled in Luxembourg (+€9.6bn) led the table for February, followed by those domiciled in Ireland (+€8.8bn), France (+€2.1bn), Switzerland (+€1.2bn), and the United Kingdom (+€1.0bn). Bond funds domiciled in Spain (-€1.2bn), Denmark (-€1.1bn), and Italy (-€0.6bn) stood at the other end of the table.
For equity funds, products domiciled in Ireland (+€2.4bn) led the table for February, followed by funds domiciled in France (+€2.2bn), Belgium (+€1.6bn), and Denmark (+€1.3bn) as well as Sweden (+€1.2bn). Meanwhile, the Netherlands (-€0.1bn), Finland (-€0.1bn), and Italy (-€0.1bn) were the domiciles with the highest net outflows from equity funds.
With regard to mixed-asset products Luxembourg (+€4.0bn) was the domicile with the highest net inflows, followed by funds domiciled in Switzerland (+€3.4bn), the United Kingdom (+€1.0bn), Spain (+€1.0bn), and Germany (+€0.9bn). On the other side of the table funds domiciled in Belgium showed the highest net outflows (-€0.2bn), bettered by funds domiciled in the Netherlands (-€0.02bn) and Norway (-€0.01bn).
Ireland (+€1.8bn) was the domicile with the highest net inflows into alternatives for February, followed by the United Kingdom (+€1.3bn), Luxembourg (+€0.7bn), and France (+€0.4bn) as well as Germany (+€0.2bn). Italy (-€0.5bn), bettered by the Netherlands (-€0.2bn) and Switzerland (-€0.03bn), stood at the other end of the table.
Fund Flows by Promoters
BlackRock, with net sales of €5.4bn, was the best selling fund promoter for February overall, ahead of PIMCO (+€4.5bn) and Societe Generale (+€3.3bn).
Considering the single-asset bases, PIMCO (+€4.3 bn) was the best selling promoter of bond funds for February, followed by BlackRock (+€2.8 bn), UBS (+€2.2 bn), and Carmignac Gestion (+€1.2 bn) as well as Muzinich & Co (+€1.0 bn).
Within the equity space BlackRock (+€2.7 bn) stood at the head of the table, followed by Societe Generale (+€1.9 bn), KBC (+€1.7 bn), and Goldman Sachs (+€1.4 bn) as well as Amundi (+€1.1 bn).
FundPartner Solutions (+€3.2bn) was the leading promoter of mixed-asset funds in Europe for February, followed by Allianz (+€0.9bn), Amundi (+€0.7bn), and Union Investment (+€0.6bn) as well as JP Morgan (+€0.6bn).
Aviva (+€1.3bn) was the leading promoter of alternatives funds for the month, followed by Old Mutual (+€0.7bn), Mercer (+€0.4bn), and Schroders (+€0.3bn) as well as Deutsche Bank (+€0.3bn).
Best Selling Funds
The ten best selling long-term funds gathered at the share-class level total net inflows of €11.1bn for February. The split of the ten best selling funds by asset type was somewhat in line with the overall sales numbers, since bond funds (with four funds, +€4.3bn) were the dominant asset type among the top-ten funds list, followed by mixed-asset funds (with two funds, +€3.7bn), and equity funds (with three funds, +€2.4bn) as well as alternatives funds (with one fund, +€0.6bn).