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Trends Observed in Institutional Holdings of Financial ETF XLF

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Jul. 13 2015, Updated 8:06 a.m. ET

Fund flows rise in 2015

Throughout the year so far, the Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLF) has experienced inflows, as economic indicators have been improving and Treasury yields (TLT) have been rising. 

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Institutional holdings in XLF in 1Q15

Yet if we look at the 13F filings of major institutional asset managers, we get a mixed picture.

Swiss-based UBS slightly increased its exposure to the Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (XLF), from 0.64% to 0.83% of its portfolio.

But in 1Q15, the top five institutions sold more shares than they bought. Trade activity among 13F filers shows a 12.93% reduction in aggregate shares of XLF held by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Major institutional holders such as Euclid Advisors, Marketfield Asset Management, and Deutsche Bank (DB) liquidated all exposure to XLF. Meanwhile, Ionic Capital Management and BlackRock (BLK) significantly reduced exposure the the fund.

This trend may be a response to the stagnating economic growth seen in the first quarter. Going forward, however, we might this changing.

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