Tried to buy a house lately? You wouldn’t be the only one – despite buyers waving goodbye to 3% and even 4% mortgage rates that were available over the last three years or so, pending home sales have surged. In January, the Pending Home Sales Index saw its biggest increase since June 2020, and the biggest surprise since May 2020, just months after the pandemic began. That news comes as real estate ETF flows are back up, though equities ETFs tumbled in this week’s asset flows chart.
|Asset Class||AUM ($, mm)||Net Flows ($, mm)|
Looking more closely at real estate ETF flows, the Schwab US REIT ETF (SCHH ) has seen the most consistent inflows so far this year and in the last few weeks, adding $64 million over the last month and $10.7 million in the last five days, contributing to the overall $121 million for the category over the week ending Tuesday.
The VanEck Mortgage REIT Income ETF (MORT ) has also seen solid inflows as part of the overall real estate ETF flows, adding $2.9 million over the last month and $11.8 million over the last three months, as well. Charging 41 basis points, it tracks the MVIS US Mortgage REITs index.
That positive news belies the outflows from equities ETFs, with the ESG-oriented iShares ESG Aware MSCI USA ETF (ESGU ) seeing the most outflows at -$5.2 billion over the last week, with the Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI ) and the Vanguard Dividend Appreciation ETF (VIG ) seeing the second and third-most respectively at -$2.6 billion and -$2.4 billion in outflows in that time.
See more: Of VIX and Return: Volatility ETFs Led Last Week
One bright spot amid those outflows was, however, $6.5 billion in net inflows for the iShares MSCI USA Quality Factor ETF (QUAL ), suggesting that right about now, a quality screen adds to a fund’s appeal. At the same time, dividend strategies took three of the top five places for most outflows for the week, suggesting that amid an overall equities outflow picture, dividends lost some of their appeal, perhaps to bonds.
Bond ETFs took the most inflows for the week as short-term debt offerings continue to offer appealing yields, with the iShares U.S. Treasury Bond ETF (GOVT ) adding $2.9 billion for the week, more than triple the next most inflows for the second-placed strategy.
Elsewhere, volatility ETFs rose above $3 billion in total AUM, continuing some strong inflow performance that may be attributable to the recent bank crisis driving some volatility. The ProShares Ultra VIX Short-Term Futures ETF (UVXY ) and the iPath Series B S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN (VXX ) both added about $144 million over the last week, contributing to overall inflows for the category.
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