Global exchange traded fund (ETF) and product (ETP) assets have reached $7trn (£5.4bn), after investors ploughed almost half a billion dollars into passive instruments during 2020, according to reports.
As markets rebounded after the Covid-19 crash in March, investors began to venture back into the market, favouring tracker funds like ETFs. By the end of August, assets residing in ETFs and ETPs had reached $7trn, data from London-based consultancy ETFGI, cited by the Financial Times, showed.
Investors poured $428bn into the vehicles in the year to date alone, 57% higher than the corresponding figure for the same period in 2019.
The data was released before US markets temporarily went into reverse, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq index falling into correction territory this week.
Markets had been buoyed by continued central bank and government stimulus measures in response to the pandemic, as interest rates have been slashed and quantitative easing programmes broadened out.
ETFGI founder Deborah Fuhr said ETF sceptics who thought Covid would spell the end for ETFs' continued dominance of investors' portfolios had been proven wrong.
"The ETF industry has registered positive investor net inflows for the past 15 months, even during February and March of this year when equity markets were in retreat as a result of worries about the economic impact from the spread of the coronavirus," Fuhr said.
iShares, the ETF arm of BlackRock, has taken in just shy of $100bn in assets in 2020 to date, eclipsed only by Vanguard, which has seen $115bn of inflows.
Of the top 20 ETF providers, only UBS and WisdomTree have seen cash pulled from their products.