The Top 10 ETF Giants

The Top 10 ETF Giants  

ETFs are among the most popular and cost-effective passive investment choices on the market. Global ETF assets surpassed $7 trillion in September 2020 despite the Covid-19 outbreak, and the funds have enjoyed a very strong few years since. Indeed, ETFs surpassed $10 trillion in assets under management (AUM) and received $1.2 trillion in flows by the end of 2021. Their expansion and success have also been fuelled by the persistent underperformance of active managers in recent years.  

Vanguard, one of the largest mutual fund companies in the world, originally popularised low-cost passive investing through index funds, and is now a leader in the fast-developing exchange-traded fund sector.  

Vanguard’s portfolio has surpassed $1 trillion in ETF assets under management (AUM) and BlackRock, which sponsors the iShares family of ETFs, has reached a top tier level surpassing $2 trillion. But, they aren’t the only prominent players in the industry.  

Here are the top 10 ETF giants ranked based on the value of their total assets under management. This is based on up-to-date data from ETF Database as of Jun 06, 2022.  

1. Blackrock Financial Management

iShares is the ETF brand of BlackRock, a US asset manager that is considered the world’s largest ETF giant by assets under management (over $2 trillion as of June 2022). The firm was established by Larry Fink in 1988.  

iShares also has one of the industry’s greatest, most diversified portfolios, made up of 394 ETFs – allowing consumers to invest in a variety of asset classes and industries.  

2. Vanguard

Vanguard is a financial services company based in the United States that was established in 1975 by John Bogle, the creator of index funds. Vanguard is distinguished by its mutual savings structure, in which all US-based fund investors are also Vanguard shareholders.  

Vanguard has grown to become the world’s second-largest ETF provider, with an AUM of around $1.9 trillion, thanks to its well-diversified portfolio of 82 ETFs. The financial powerhouse specialises in ETFs in the stock and fixed income markets.  

3. State Street

State Street Global Advisors, a US-based asset management firm, owns the SPDR ETF brand. It was founded in 1792 and released its first ETF in 1993. State Street is now one of the top three ETF giants in the world, with a portfolio of 138 ETFs and around $940 billion in AUM.  

In the equities and fixed income sectors, SPDR ETF draws on a broad coverage of Bloomberg, MSCI, and S&P indexes. The firm is also well known for popularising Dividend Aristocrat ETFs.  

4. Invesco

With $358 billion in assets under management, a presence in 25 countries, and client coverage in over 120 countries, Invesco is the world’s 4th largest independent asset manager. The firm has around 238 ETFs, in addition to a diverse selection of active funds.  

Invesco has a wide range of ETFs that track the most major equity indices. Several sector and thematic ETFs, such as blockchain and clean energy, are also available, as well as ETFs selected and created using ESG criteria (environmental, social and corporate governance).  

5. Charles Schwab

Charles Schwab Corporation, also commonly known as Schwab, is an American multinational financial services company. The company was founded by Charles R. Schwab in 1986 and is headquartered in Austin, TX.  

The firm has $255 billion in AUM and offers a portfolio of 27 ETFs available across core asset classes, providing diversification opportunities through exposure to multiple market segments. 

6. First Trust

First Trust is a US-based asset manager that was founded in 1991 and is the world’s sixth-largest ETF provider. It has around $139 billion in AUM and 194 ETFs in total.  

The majority of First Trust’s European ETFs are based on Nasdaq’s Smart Beta indices. This so-called AlphaDEX index series picks corporations based on their commitment to growth factors.  

Aside from Smart Beta methods, First Trust also offers ETFs that focus on specific topics like IPOs and blockchain. 

7. J.P. Morgan Chase

J.P. Morgan Chase is America’s largest bank and one of the world’s most powerful financial institutions. J.P. Morgan’s ETF business is primarily focused on the United States. They currently have 43 ETFs with $76 billion in assets under management.   

Short-term international government bonds and different active ETFs are the focus of their ETF offering in Europe.  

8. World Gold Council

The World Gold Council is an international trade group for the gold industry. The Company aims to increase demand for gold among consumers, investors, industry, and government agencies. World Gold also aims to engage in market activities to boost demand, as well as to reduce regulatory hurdles to broad gold ownership, and assist in the development of distribution channels.  

They currently have 2 ETFs, the SPDR Goldshares and SPDR Gold MiniShares Trust, with assets under management of $68 billion.   

9. ProShares

ProShares was founded in 2006 and now has around 135 alternative ETFs to meet the demands of a wide audience of investors. Their ETFs cover the spectrum from strategic to tactical, cautious to aggressive, as a leading provider of alternative ETFs and the world’s leader in geared funds. The firm’s ETF portfolio has $61 billion in assets under management.  

10. VanEck

VanEck is an asset manager based in New York City that was established in 1955. VanEck’s assets under management ($58.6 billion) are made up of approximately 75% ETFs.  

The firm purchased the Dutch ETF provider Think ETF in early 2018 and merged it as a subsidiary, boosting its European portfolio. A company situated in Frankfurt am Main creates many new indexes for VanEck ETFs.  

VanEck’s key operations include a variety of gold-related items. In addition, VanEck features ETFs based on specific indices that no other provider has. These include high-yield bond indices with a concentration on previous top firms or emerging economies, in addition to preferred stock indexes and stocks with the highest discount to their true value.  

The 5 Largest ETFs

The top 5 ETF providers offer all 50 of the largest ETFs, with AUM ranging from $23 billion to $329 billion. Here are the five biggest ETFs:  

  • State Street’s SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) – AUM $373,207,000  
  • Blackrock’s iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IVV) – AUM $307,755,000  
  • Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI) – AUM $266,308,000  
  • Vanguard S&P 500 ETF (VOO) – AUM $261,069,000  
  • Invesco QQQ Trust (QQQ) – AUM $166,775,000  

Did you know?

Interestingly, BlackRock, Vanguard, and State Street’s combined dominance is prompting fears among regulators, particularly the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), that they are limiting competition. These three companies control almost 80% of the $4 trillion in ETF assets, a significant concentration ratio that could lead to antitrust proceedings.   

However, some in the sector disagree, with the Investment Company Institute (ICI) stating that smaller businesses still have the opportunity to make a name for themselves in the market.  

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