Korea Exchange announced on Jan. 7 that the total net asset of ETFs listed in South Korea hit a record high of 51.7 trillion won at the end of last year, up 26.1 percent from a year earlier, led by a continuous supply of new ETFs and improved local stock market conditions. Last year, 35 domestic and 13 international ETFs were listed to increase the numbers to 335 and 115, respectively. For reference, the South Korean ETF market was opened in 2002 and the total net asset was 344.4 billion won at that time.
Last year, the KODEX 200 ETF attracted the largest investment in the market, 1,292 billion won, and its total net asset was 9.3 trillion won, equivalent to 18 percent of the market. The TIGER 200 ETF attracted 1,103 billion won. The two ETFs are based on the KOSPI 200 index.
The average return of the 450 ETFs was 6.54 percent last year. Specifically, the average return of domestic stock ETFs was 7.83 percent, 0.16 percentage point higher than the growth rate of the KOSPI stock market. All in all, ETFs linked to the U.S. and Chinese stock markets showed relatively higher rates of return.
In addition, a number of fixed income ETFs made their debut last year with investors preferring regular cash payments such as dividends, real estate rental income and bond interests amid low interest rates and economic uncertainties. Korea Exchange is planning to supply various fixed income ETFs this year as well in order to help investors make stable investments.