Investors Embrace ETFs Backed by MSCI Indices

This year has been a decent one for inflows to exchange traded funds and there is an outside chance U.S.-listed exchange traded products can reach last year’s record inflows total of $247.3 billion.

Even if that number is not toppled, it is clear investors are continuing to embrace ETFs that track indices from MSCI (NYSE: MSCI), the largest provider of ETF indices.

“During the first six months of 2014, ETF investors directed a larger proportion of new funds into MSCI index-based ETFs than those of any other index provider, and ETF providers launched more new funds based on MSCI indexes than those of any other index provider. This market share data highlights both the appeal of MSCI indexes to global investors and the widespread adoption of the indexes by the world’s leading ETF providers,” according to a statement released by MSCI.

Through the first six months of this year, $84 billion flowed into U.S.-listed ETFs with $29 billion, or 34%, heading into ETFs that benchmark to MSCI indices. A prime example is the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (NYSEArca: EEM). EEM, the second-largest emerging markets ETF by assets, led all ETFs in terms of second-quarter inflows with nearly $6 billion. [iShares Leads Q2 ETF Flows]

New ETFs backed by MSCI indices are also proving to be impressive asset gatherers. In the first half of 2014, “75 ETFs based on MSCI indexes – around one third of all equity ETFs launched, raising a total of approximately USD 1.5 billion,” according to MSCI.