Assets in exchange-traded funds around the world now surpass $1 trillion, soaring an astounding 45.2% from $710.9 billion at the end of 2008 to $1.032 trillion at the end of last year, BlackRock reported. By comparison, the return on the MSCI World Index in that timeframe was 27%, indicating that a good percentage of that growth was driven by inflows.

Currently, there are a total of 1,939 ETFs from 109 providers in the world trading on 40 exchanges.

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