By Terry Flanagan

European Fund Managers Gain Ground

European asset managers make up seven of the 10 firms with largest net sales in Europe this year after the rankings were dominated by US firms in 2013 according to Lipper, the fund research provider.

At the ninth Annual Lipper Expert Forum on November 12 in London, Detlef Glow, head of EMEA research at Lipper said the restructuring by European asset managers has started to pay off with an increase in sales.

Glow said at the conference: “Last year US firms dominated Europe. This year European firms have come back and make up seven out of the top 10 for net sales.”

Blackrock had the largest net sales in Europe up to September, followed by Switzerland’s UBS and then JP Morgan according to Glow. Other European managers in the top 10 were Deutsche Asset and Wealth Management, Intesa Sanpaolo, Allianz, Nordea and Amundi. Vanguard, the US manager, was in seventh place. The top 10 firms have a 37% share of net sales in Europe according to Lipper.

One of the reasons European firms have gained ground is because of the increased popularity of multi-asset funds, which are mainly sold through local fund managers, particularly through specialised boutiques.

Glow said bond funds have been the best sellers in Europe to the end of September this year but, for the first time, mixed asset funds have been more popular than equities.

In a note this week Glow said the European mutual fund industry experienced overall net inflows of €3.2 bn into long-term mutual funds in September. Mixed-asset products had inflows of €8.6bn, bond products €1.6bn while equity funds had net outflows of€5.3bn.

At the conference Glow said it is possible that the popularity of multi-asset products may not last. He added that the sale of multi-asset products is being driven by independent financial advisors but also by demand from institutions such as fund-of-funds and pension funds.

“In the other direction some institutions have pulled out of multi-asset funds because chief investment officers tell their staff that they pay them for asset allocation, which should not be delegated,” Glow added. “Asset managers are also getting mandates from some pension funds to advise on asset allocation rather selling them mixed asset funds.”

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