Retail investors continue to buy the dip in ETFs

Amateur translators have led a record rate of inflows into stock exchanges this year, suggesting that beyond their captivating forays into extravagant individual stocks, they are also playing a role in cushioning wider declines in index.

U.S. listed ETFs, which typically allow investors to gain or lose exposure to stock baskets, will attract $ 249 billion by 2020. But so far this year, they have attracted a record $ 305 billion – largely from retail investors, according to research firm CFRA.

“Investors don’t panic when they sell a sale and most of the new money that is deployed is for broad market ETFs that build blocks for portfolios,” said Todd Rosenbluth, head of ETFs and research. of CFRA mutual funds.

ETF flows have helped explain the limited returns in the US stock index since last November. Typically, a 5 percent decrease in the capital market occurs three times a year, but none has happened in the last seven months. Bank of America also notes that the last 15 months have not brought a single 10 percent correction to the S&P 500 index, usually an event that grows at least once a year.

“Whenever there is an immediate decline in stocks, retail comes immediately to buy the dip,” said Eric Liu, an analyst at Vanda Research. “People are defending ETFs as a way to buy the dip. And recently retail has bought more ETFs than any other segment of the capital population.”

Investment advisors and brokerages have supported flows in ETFs, where retail investors have accounted for 70 percent of the sector’s flows so far this year, JPMorgan analysts said in a research note. “The ETF flow has represented a wall of money supporting every dip in the stock markets so far this year” and “the bigger the dip, the more the ETF stock flow,” the bank said.

The question is whether this bullish sentiment will survive when it is tested. Markets have come together hard, and are now at record price levels and high valuations. In the coming months, inflation fears will intensify alongside pressures on companies from rising wage and input costs.

Signals from the Federal Reserve that it may reduce its bond buying pace present another challenge for asset prices that have risen as investors have moved away from debt markets, where low interest rates are rising. interest rates have eroded the yield paid on bonds.

Retail money market funds they still have plenty of ammunition to buy any larger share of equity prices, with stakes at an all-time high above $ 1tn. That money essentially earns zero interest, and provides a strong source of dry dust.

“If you’re wondering if retail investors are buying the immersion“ if and when we see more market volatility, all we can say for sure is that they absolutely have the money to do it, ”said Nicholas Colas, co-founder DataTrek Search.

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