Despite the steep sell-off in global equities and fixed-income markets amid the COVID-19 pandemic in the first quarter, traditional publicly traded asset managers remained resilient, according to analysis from asset management strategy consultant Casey Quirk, a Deloitte business.
The analysis of 19 firms with some $16 trillion assets under management showed median revenue at traditional publicly traded asset managers fell 6.7% over the three months ended March 31, while operating expense slid 3.9%.
While AUM slumped 16.7% from Dec. 31, average AUM fell only 2% as the severe market decline occurred late in March. Fees were stable, net flows declined less than 1%, and operating margins for the median manager slipped 1.9% in the first quarter.
Asset managers profited from resilient capital markets for most of the 12 months ending March 31. Median revenue for publicly traded managers went up 3.9% during the period, while operating expenses fell 5%. Meanwhile, operating margins climbed 5.5%, and average AUM gained 4.1% in the first quarter of 2020 compared with the first quarter of 2019.