ETF.com just released its fund flow data for April, and the results were broadly pretty bullish for investors.
The best ETFs, at least by cash raked in, include domestic equity funds such as the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY), the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV) and the Vanguard S&P 500 ETF (VOO). Those funds had inflows totalling $2.4 billion, $1.6 billion and $1.0 billion, respectively.
Overall, more than $20 billion came into U.S. listed exchange-traded funds on the month — up more than 30% from the entire tally across Q1 — and pushed total ETF assets to yet another record high of nearly $1.8 trillion. Yes, trillion with a “T.”
But it’s not just U.S. stock funds that are among the best ETFs for April, according to ETF.com. The iShares MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (EEM) and Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF (VWO) gained $3.9 billion and $651 million, respectively. In fact, the EEM fund was the single biggest asset gainer among all ETFs in April.
So where does that leave investors looking for the best ETF investing strategy?
Well, clearly domestic equity is strong — something a recent new record for the Dow Jones drives home — but it’s also clear that emerging markets aren’t dead after all.
Of course, ETF.com does point out that while inflows have snapped back in April, they aren’t at the level we saw during the roaring rally of 2013. Cinthia Murphy writes over at ETF.com:
“In a broader sense, the pace of flows into ETFs this year is lagging that of 2013, when total net inflows topped $188 billion for the year — a record. So far this year, investors have poured slightly more than $35 billion into U.S.-listed ETFs, about a third of which landed in fixed-income funds.”
In short, while April hints at a more “risk on” approach to equities and emerging markets … the long-term trends of ETF fund flows may not be quite that encouraging.
Check out the full ETF.com report here.
Jeff Reeves is the editor of InvestorPlace.com and the author of The Frugal Investor’s Guide to Finding Great Stocks. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. Write him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter via @JeffReevesIP.