Vanguard isn't taking in as much money; neither is anyone else

Giant asset manager's inflows were down 42% in the first half.

Jul 6, 2018 @ 4:14 pm

By Bloomberg News

Vanguard Group is attracting a lot less money from investors this year compared with 2017. Turns out, the mutual fund giant's not alone.

Vanguard, the world's second-largest money manager, collected $138 billion in the first half of 2018, down from $237 billion in the same period a year ago, according to the firm. That's a decline of 42%.

By comparison, total U.S. fund flows — money going into exchange-traded, active and passive mutual funds — fell roughly 50%, according to Bloomberg estimates.

"At first glance it looks like Vanguard is having an off year, but relatively speaking their dominance is still intact," said Eric Balchunas, senior ETF analyst with Bloomberg Intelligence.

The reason for the drop-off in overall flows? The so-so performance of the stock market, said Mr. Balchunas, who points out that there is a strong correlation between market returns and fund flows. The S&P 500 Index rose 2.7% in this year's first half, compared with 9.3% in the first six months of last year.

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