Most Popular & Most Hated ETFs of 2016

The year 2016 has been filled with great oscillations as investors were taken on a wild ride, with some markets and exchange traded fund standing out from the rest.

There are now 1,960 U.S.-listed exchange traded products with $2.550 trillion in net assets under management after the ETP industry attracted $283 billion in net inflows for the year.

Among the most popular ETFs, investors still threw billions into S&P 500-related offerings. For example, the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: SPY) saw $24.4 billion in net inflows, iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: IVV) attracted $13.5 billion and Vanguard 500 Index (NYSEArca: VOO) added $11.4 billion, according to XTF data. The S&P 500 ETFs saw heavy inflows over the past month, with SPY bringing in $15.4 billion, as investors looked to a pro-growth environment ahead under the new Donald Trump administration.

The broad bond play, iShares Core U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF (NYSEArca: AGG), also saw $11.2 billion in inflows.

Developed market ETFs, including Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets ETF (NYSEArca: VEA) added $11.0 billion and iShares Core MSCI EAFE ETF (NYSEArca: IEFA) attracted $6.2 billion.

Despite the sell-off in recent months, the SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD) still managed to bring in $7.4 billion in net inflows for the year. GLD saw $4.8 billion in outflows in the fourth quarter as the U.S. dollar strengthened and the Federal Reserve embarked on the path of interest rate hikes.

The emerging markets have also been a popular play this year after developing country stocks underperformed developed markets over the past few years. The Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets ETF (NYSEArca: VWO) brought in $6.8 billion and iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (NYSEArca: IEMG) experienced $7.3 billion in inflows.

Lastly, the iShares TIPS Bond ETF (NYSEArca: TIP) saw $6.8 billion in net inflows for the year as traders sought to hedge against a rising inflationary pressures, especially with President-elect Trump promising many expansionary policies.