Exchange-traded products are on a roll, following up a record year of flows with a major milestone the first month of the new year.

Assets in the global exchange-traded products industry have just surpassed the $2 trillion mark, the ETP Research team at BlackRock announced today.

ETPs enjoyed $262.7 billion in flows globally in 2012, a 27% increase compared with the end of 2011. Assets reached $2 trillion on Jan. 18.

Fixed income ETPs and emerging market equity ETPs also set new records in 2012, recording net inflows of $70.0 billion and $54.8 billion respectively.

According to a BlackRock press statement, it took 19 years for the ETP industry to surpass $1 trillion, which took place in 2009. Global head of ETP research Dodd Kittsley said the rapid uptake on ETPs is taking place in all major regions thanks to higher awareness of the cost-efficiency and access to asset classes that ETPs offer to institutional, professional and retail investors.

"ETP providers are expanding and deepening their coverage of different assets classes and regions, allowing investors to put ETPs to use in new ways and employ them to access areas where they couldn’t before, such as emerging market debt. ETPs were once thought of as primarily equity-based funds for institutional investors, and today’s milestone proves this is certainly no longer the case," Kittsley said.

BlackRock managed $3.972 trillion in assets — which include mutual funds, separate accounts and iShares exchange-traded funds — as of Dec. 31.

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