Which mutual funds do retail and high net worth investors choose?

Published: December 11, 2021 at 7:00 am

The association of mutual funds in India (AMFI) publishes aggregate AUM held by different mutual fund investors across fund categories each quarter.  Here are some insights into which type of funds are preferred by high net worth individuals/investors (HNIs) and retail investors.

The definition of an HNIs is far from accurate and, in this context, limited only to mutual funds. A person buying mutual funds units worth more than Rs. 2 lakhs in one shot (single transaction) is defined as an HNI. So by this definition, a person who invest Rs. 1 lakh each in ten mutual funds per month will not be regarded as an HNI!

That said, since the definition of higher net worth is relative, the HNI holding pattern still offers important insights.

The total AUM reported is Rs. 3673893.17 Crores. This is how it is distributed. For example, 17.1% of the total AUM is held in Liquid Fund/Money Market Fund/ Floater Fund by (1) Corporates; (2) Banks/FIs; (3) FIIs;  (4)High Networth Individuals and (5) Retail

Types of Schemes% AUM
Growth/ Equity Oriented Schemes35.3%
Remaining Income/ Debt Oriented Schemes22.4%
Liquid Fund/Money Market Fund/ Floater Fund17.1%
Hybrid Schemes12.2%
ETFs(other than Gold)9.9%
Index Funds0.9%
Solution-Oriented Schemes0.8%
Fund of Funds investing Overseas0.6%
Gilt Fund/ Gilt Fund with 10-year constant duration0.5%
Gold ETF0.4%

Keeping the above allocation in mind while looking at retail and HNI AUM is important. Next, the total retail and HNI aum account for 56% of the total AUM. The corporates hold the biggest slice with about 42%

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About 85% of the total AUM held by corporates are in debt funds and non-gold ETFs.

Types of SchemesCorporate AUM
Liquid Fund/Money Market Fund/ Floater Fund33.0%
Remaining Income/ Debt Oriented Schemes30.6%
ETFs(other than Gold)21.8%
Growth/ Equity Oriented Schemes7.6%
Hybrid Schemes4.8%
Index Funds0.7%
Gilt Fund/ Gilt Fund with 10-year constant duration0.7%
Gold ETF0.6%
Fund of Funds investing Overseas0.2%
Solution-Oriented Schemes0.0%

This is the share of retail and HNI AUM.

Types of SchemesRetailHNIs
Liquid Fund/Money Market Fund/ Floater Fund1.4%7.5%
Gilt Fund/ Gilt Fund with 10-year constant duration0.2%0.6%
Remaining Income/ Debt Oriented Schemes3.3%23.5%
Growth/ Equity Oriented Schemes80.3%39.7%
Hybrid Schemes10.3%23.8%
Solution-Oriented Schemes2.3%0.7%
Index Funds0.9%1.2%
Gold ETF0.3%0.4%
ETFs(other than Gold)0.5%1.6%
Fund of Funds investing Overseas0.5%1.1%

Most of the retail AUM, about 91%, is in equity funds (80%) and hybrid funds. The HNI AUM is significantly more diversified across categories. HNIs strongly prefer liquid and money market funds, debt funds, gilt funds, and non-gold ETFs.

  • While corporates hold 81% of the Liquid Fund/Money Market Fund/ Floater Fund AUM, the HNIs hold 14% compared to merely 2% retail AUM.
  • Corporates hold 55% of gilt AUM, HNIs 36% and retail 7%.
  • Corporates hold 57% of the remaining debt funds, HNIs 34% and retail merely 3.5%
  • 54% of equity fund AUM is held by retail investors; 36% HNI and 9% corporates.
  • 64% of Hyrbid fund AUM is held by HNIs, 20% by retail investors, and 16% by corporates.
  • It is interesting to see that HNIs have invested more in index funds than retail investors (although the AUM share of index funds is less than 1%). About 42% of index fund AUM is from HNIs; 24.5% retail and 33% corporates.
  • 61% of Fund of Funds AUM is from HNIs compared to 22% from retail and 16% from corporate.

In summary, high networth individuals seem to have focused on lower volatility, tax efficiency and diversification while retail investors on (potential) higher growth. Only 40% of the total HNI AUM is in Growth/ Equity Oriented Schemes (compared to 80% of retail AUM).

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