Brussels
01 March 2017
Reporter: Mark Dugdale

UCITS and AIF sales fell in 2016


Net sales of UCITS and alternative investment funds fell to €455 billion last year as Europe was beset by plunging stock markets and Brexit.

The European Fund and Asset Management Association (EFAMA) round-up of 2016, which was compiled with data from 29 associations representing more than 99 percent of total UCITS and alternative investment fund assets, noted a fall in net sales last year from the €740 billion achieved in 2015.

“While the launch of the European Central Bank’s quantitative easing programme boosted the demand for UCITS in January-April 2015, UCITS did not benefit from any positive developments in 2016,” EFAMA explained.

“On the contrary, the stock market plunge in early 2016, weak economic growth and the UK’s vote to leave the EU [on 23 June 2016] created much uncertainty about the future, which slowed demand for UCITS.”

Despite the fall in net sales, assets under management in UCITS and alternative investment funds climbed above the €14 trillion mark for the first time ever in 2016.

Net sales contributed to 52 percent of the rise in total assets, according to EFAMA, with market appreciation accounting for the remainder of the increase.

Bernard Delbecque, director of economics and research at EFAMA, commented: “The European investment fund industry ended 2016 with a new record high of assets under management, and good results in terms of net sales, considering the high degree of volatility in the financial markets and the rising political uncertainties.”

“UCITS and alternative investment funds remain very attractive investment products in the eyes of investors, thanks to the protection offered by the regulation and the expected returns compared to alternative savings products.”

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