Larry Fink, chief executive of BlackRock,believes that strategies combining ETFs and alternatives in a “barbell” approach are gaining momentum. Particularly, Fink expects to see a shift into equities as a major theme for 2013, citing large fixed-income investors who recently shifted $6.5 billion into equities, mostly in index-based funds. However, current flows indicate that investors are only taking a tactical approach, not a full scale commitment to equities.

Additionally, Kittsley pointed out with the new U.S. dividend taxes in place, investors have a clear outlook on dividend investments. Consequently, dividend-focused equity ETFs gathered about $1 billion in January after experiencing outflows in December.

For more information on ETF asset flows, visit our ETF performance reports category.

Max Chen contributed to this article.