The first nine months of this year have been full of happenings for exchange traded funds (ETFs).

In a forthcoming report by Deborah Fuhr for Barclays, she notes that investors moved assets into fixed-income and commodity focused ETFs, while equity has seen a decline. The assets in global and especially Asian equity markets have retreated.

Fuhr’s report also finds that investors who are concerned with counterparty risk, transparency and liquidity when using swaps, notes or certificates have a preference for ETFs, reports ETF Express.

As of the end of September, there were 1,499 ETFs with assets of $764.1 billion worldwide, managed by 86 managers, up from 75 at the beginning of the year, and with a total of 2,494 listings on 43 exchanges, up from 41.

The top index provider is Standard & Poor’s, with $187.3 billion in ETF assets tied to its benchmarks. MSCI Barra comes in second, with $150.9 billion, and Dow Jones/Stoxx, with $77.5 billion.

By the end of the most recent quarter, the United States had 20 managers, 681 ETFs with $542.3 billion in assets on four exchanges. So far this year, 103 ETFs have launched and another 486 are planned. Total assets have fallen 6.6%, but we believe this owes more to the current market conditions than any lack of interest in ETFs.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.