October 17, 2017

Conventional Fund Investors Remain Cautious in September, While APs Turn on the Afterburners

by Tom Roseen.

Conventional mutual fund investors opted to sit on the sidelines in September, embracing fixed income and money market products, while authorized participants (APs—ETF investors) remained risk-seeking. Although mutual fund investors redeemed some $27.9 billion from stock & mixed-equity funds for the month, for the sixteenth consecutive month APs were net purchasers, injecting $17.2 billion. Year to date through September 30, 2017, conventional equity mutual funds handed back some $119.4 billion net, while equity ETFs took in $226.4 billion. On the fixed income side of the equation the focus of fund investors and APs stayed in step, with conventional bond funds attracting $207.6 billion year to date and bond ETFs drawing in $101.3 billion for the same period. In this segment we highlight the September fund-flow trends for both types of investment vehicles.


  • For the third month in a row mutual fund investors were net purchasers of fund assets, injecting a net $13.5 billion into the conventional funds business. Fixed income funds (+$21.4 billion) and money market funds (+$20.0 billion) witnessed net inflows for September, while investors were net redeemers of stock & mixed-asset funds (-$27.9 billion).
  • For the first month in six Thomson Reuters Lipper’s World Equity Funds macro-classification witnessed net outflows, handing back $2.8 billion for September.
  • For the twentieth consecutive month authorized participants (APs) were net purchasers of ETFs, injecting $28.5 billion for September. APs injected a net $17.2 billion into stock & mixed-asset ETFs and were net purchasers of bond ETFs, injecting a net $11.3 billion.
  • For the first month in seven the Sector Equity ETF macro-classification (+$8.3 billion net) attracted the largest net draw of the five broad-based equity ETF macro-groups.

Click here to download the September 2017 FundFlows Insight Report: Conventional Fund Investors Remain Cautious in September, While APs Turn on the Afterburners.

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