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Fund Spy

Active Funds Are Dead. Long Live Active Funds.

Is low-cost really the "new past performance"?

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Key Takeaways

  • Recent reports suggest investors are fleeing active funds in droves, and not even successful active funds have been immune.
  • This is largely a phenomenon among active U.S. stock funds; in other asset classes, past performance still appears to strongly influence flows to active funds.
  • Among active U.S. stock funds, past performance appears to explain asset growth, even after accounting for fee differences.
  • Some successful active U.S. stock funds are likely seeing outflows as part of a larger structural shift toward indexing and wider diversification; this reflects broader currents, including changing advice practices.
  • Winning large-growth mutual funds account for a disproportionate share of outflows from successful active U.S. stock funds overall. 

Jeffrey Ptak does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.

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