India exchange traded funds have looked pretty good this year compared to single-country BRIC rivals.
For example, the WisdomTree India Earnings Fund (NYSEArca: EPI) is only slightly lower on the year while the iShares MSCI India ETF (NYSEArca: INDA) is flat. Those impressive performances considering elevated levels of inflation in India and a spate of interest rate hikes that, to this point, have proven largely ineffective in combating said inflation. [India ETF Flirts With Technical Rally]
However, some investors have been pulling cash from India ETFs even as others return to Asia’s third-largest economy. “Assets under management of India focused ETFs have nearly halved to $30 billion from about $56 billion in the past three years,” the Economic Times reports, citing Morningstar data.
While India ETFs have lost assets this year, U.S. college endowments and Middle East sovereign wealth, among other large-scale investors, have returned to Indian equities, gobbling up health care and infrastructure shares in particular, according to the Economic Times.
The EGShares India Infrastructure Index Fund (NYSEArca: INXX) is up 1.4% in the past month and has not lost any assets this year. However, INDA and the PowerShares India Portfolio (NYSEArca: PIN), both with health care allocations north of 7%, have lost assets this year.
Regarding EPI, Street One Financial said “Buyers of June 17 puts were around in good size in this ETF” on Monday. [Investigating India]
Despite the outflows from India ETFs, it is a positive sign that pensions plans, endowments and sovereign wealth funds are buying Indian stocks because those are usually long only investors with lengthy time horizons, indicating they see potential in the Indian economy. Plus, there is no denying the out-performance of Indian shares over their BRIC rivals this year.