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03 March 2020

EFAMA: Equity UCITS sales bounced back in Q4 but bond funds remain 2019 bestsellers

EFAMA has published its latest Quarterly Statistical Release describing the trends in the European investment fund industry in the fourth quarter of 2019 as well as a summary for the full year.

Net sales highlights in Q4 and 2019

  • Total net assets of UCITS and AIFs grew by 3.3 percent in Q4 to EUR 17.7 trillion, bringing the annual growth figure to 16.8 percent for 2019. After the steep stock-market drop at the end of 2018, both stock and bond markets grew strongly over the course of 2019. 
  • Continued growth net sales in Q4, at EUR 190 billion, was largely driven by UCITS (EUR 148 billion), bringing annual net sales for both UCITS and AIFs to EUR 546 billion in 2019 (from EUR 258 billion in 2018). AIFs sales amounted to EUR 43 billion in Q4, totalling EUR 152 billion in 2019 (from EUR 137 billion in 2018).
  • ​Bond fund sales slowed down in Q4 but remained the bestselling UCITS category in 2019, gathering EUR 301 billion in net new money. Fear over a global economic slowdown prompted central banks around the world to move towards more accommodative monetary policy.  As the situation seemed to improve, the bond fund rally subsided in favour of other long-term funds. 
  • Equity funds suffered net outflows in 2019 despite a return to positive territory in Q4. A tentatively improving economic outlook, supported by decisive monetary policy actions, increased investor confidence.  Net inflows into equity funds amounted to EUR 53 billion, compared to net outflows of EUR 12 billion in Q3 2019.
  • Investors’ renewed confidence in the last quarter of 2019 saw multi-asset funds recording stronger net sales, amounting to EUR 57 billion, up from EUR 30 billion in Q3 2019.
  • The demand for ETFs strengthened in Q4. Net sales of UCITS ETFs amounted to EUR 46 billion, almost a third of total UCITS net sales.

Highlights of ownership of investment funds:

  • European investors held EUR 12.6 trillion worth of investments at end September 2019
  • The countries with the highest level of fund ownership were Germany (23%), the UK (14%), France (14%), the Netherlands (10%) and Italy (9%).
  • Insurers and pension funds are the largest holders of investment funds with a combined share of 42% at end September. They are followed by other financial intermediaries and households.

Full statistical release on EFAMA

© EFAMA - European Fund and Asset Management Association

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