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EPFR - fund flow & allocations data

Two weeks into the Year of the Ox, China funds see flows spike

Global Navigation

For Chinese citizens the Year of the Ox began on February 12. Horoscopes for this year say it is a good one for building up reserves and making long-term investments. During the week ending Feb. 24 investors appeared to be taking this to heart. China Bond Funds set a new weekly inflow record and China Equity Funds posted their second largest inflow since EPFR started tracking them while flows into Hong Kong Equity Funds hit a 24-week high.

Topic Industry News

EPFR - fund flow & allocations data

Quants Corner - Inflation: A mythical beast of antiquity?

Quants Corner

When readers of this blog were young, their bedtime fare probably included tales featuring dragons and the people who either slew or bonded with them. As they grew older, their parents likely told them tales about a mythical sounding but real scourge: inflation and its evil twin stagflation. Read more here…

Topic Industry News

EPFR - fund flow & allocations data

Emerging, green and global remain the preferred equity themes in mid-February

Global Navigator

Investors poured another $27.8 billion into EPFR-tracked Equity Funds during the week ending Feb. 17, with Emerging Markets, SRI/ESG and Global Equity Funds posting inflows for the sixth, 28th and 35th consecutive week respectively, as investors continue to position themselves for a global reflation story with green characteristics. That reflation may also come with unexpectedly high levels of inflation, especially in the US, remains a concern for some investors. Convertible Bond Funds set their second inflow record in as many weeks, Bank Loan Bond Funds extended their longest run of inflows since 3Q18 and Inflation Protected Bond Funds absorbed fresh money for the 50th time in the past 55 weeks. While Equity Funds with socially responsible (SRI) or environmental, social and governance (ESG) mandates enjoyed another solid week, SRI/ESG Bond Funds posted their second consecutive weekly inflow record and -- in relative terms -- are outgaining their equity counterparts for the first time since August.

Topic Industry News

Digital Banking Hub, Digital Banking Research

Ensuring Travel Card Reward Schemes remain relevant during the pandemic

American Express Gold Card

Ensuring Travel Card Reward Schemes remain relevant during the pandemic How do Travel Card Reward Schemes remain relevant when travel is not only restricted, but completely banned in some areas of the world? In reviewing the digital developments of 25 U.S. providers, our Senior Analyst, Gina DeCorla, has pulled together this blog that examines just that, through: - Changing points systems to favor “lockdown leisure” activities vs. travel - Temporary reward schemes for grocer, gas, and other spending - The offer of lifetime travel points to be redeemed once travel resumes In this 4-minute blog, Gina shows real examples of how these updates have been implemented by providers including American Express, Chase, Wells Fargo.

Topic Industry News Digital Banking

EPFR - fund flow & allocations data

Fund flows respond as markets pencil in more icing on US cake

Global Navigator

The week ending February 10 saw key US equity indexes hit record highs as another sub-par jobs report for January boosted hopes of a third major stimulus package since the COVID-19 pandemic hit a year ago. Visions of another $1.9 trillion cascading through the US economy – and spilling over into those of major trading partners – also boosted flows into Equity Funds, which posted their biggest weekly total since EPFR started tracking them.

Topic Industry News

EPFR - fund flow & allocations data

Quants Corner - Is volatility coming out of the doldrums?

Quants Corner

It feels like a long time, but it was only three years ago when the VIX index, the benchmark for measuring market volatility, hit an all-time intraday low of 8.56. Although CBOE noted that it was a glitch, and November 27, 2017 ended with the VIX well above 9, it highlighted the degree to which volatility had gone AWOL. That was reinforced six days later when the historical realized volatility of the S&P 500 index recorded its all-time low of 6.87. Although investors were slow to accept the fact, as the chart below shows, volatility had by then been declining for the better part of a decade in the face of massive quantitative easing spearheaded by the US Federal Reserve, European Central Bank and Bank of Japan. This involved the provision of enormous liquidity, slashing interest rates to zero -- or below -- and the consistent issuance of strong verbal forward guidance aimed at suppressing volatility. Because volatility is a very important input in most of the traditional models for asset pricing and portfolio construction, this has created significant questions and challenges for investors and money managers. In this blog we look at two of these questions. First, is volatility returning? Second, if it is, what is the best way to measure it? Read more here…

Topic Industry News

Digital Banking Hub, Digital Banking Research

Adapting Online Banking to Changing Customer Behavior in the Covid-19 Pandemic

Desktop Servicing Bank of America

Leveraging data from our recently published Retail Checking Desktop Servicing Report, our FBX Research Manager, Lisa Andersson, has compiled three key desktop banking trends as a result of financial institutions adjusting to new customer behaviours and managing the reduction of in-person channels, in the face of recent events, including: - More accessible Help and Support - Self-service for more journeys - Focus on engagement features In this 5-minute blog, Lisa shows real examples of how these trends are being realized by leading providers including Bank of America, Huntington, Simple, TD Bank and Wells Fargo.

Topic Digital Banking Industry News

EPFR - fund flow & allocations data

Silver gets the retail medal going into February

Global Navigator

Retail efforts to squeeze real and perceived institutional short positions dominated the headlines for the second week running in early February. EPFR-tracked Silver Funds were carried along for the ride, setting a new inflow record during a week when retail investors switched their attention from GameStop shares and pushed the price of the precious metal up to an eight-year high. Retail investors also steered significant amounts of money towards fund groups offering exposure to the global reflation story expected during second half of the year, when better weather and widespread vaccination programs give consumers the scope to unleash more than a year’s worth of pent-up demand. Global Equity Funds posted retail inflows for the 24th time in the past 26 weeks and Technology Sector Funds – which also set a new inflow mark -- for the 40th time since the beginning of 2Q20 while China Equity Funds absorbed fresh retail money for the 33rd consecutive week. There was less interest during the latest week in hedging against the inflation this anticipated surge in demand could bring, with flows to Inflation Protected and Bank Loan Funds moderating, and more interest in picking up yield by way of exposure to junk bonds, emerging markets and municipal debt and total return strategies. Overall, the week ending February 3 saw EPFR-tracked Bond Funds post their biggest collective inflow since early October while Alternative Funds took in $866 million, Balanced Funds $916 million and Equity Funds $9 billion. Outflows from Money Market Funds hit a year-to-date high of over $30 billion, with Europe Money Market Funds experiencing their heaviest redemptions since late 1Q20.

Topic Industry News