On September 9, 2022, the Ontario Securities Commission (“OSC”) published the results of its annual Investment Fund Survey (“IFS”). The IFS gathers input from over 400 investment fund managers (“IFMs”) registered in Ontario to collect data on approximately 5,700 prospectus-qualified (“PFs”) and exempt investment funds (“EFs”) with at least $10 million in net assets. The purpose of the IFS is to collect data from IFMs, thereby allowing for more comprehensive oversight of the Canadian investment fund industry by the OSC. This is done in furtherance of the OSC’s mandate to: (i) protect investors, (ii) foster fair, efficient and competitive capital markets and confidence in capital markets, (iii) foster capital formation, and (iv) contribute to the stability of the financial system and reduce systemic risk. In addition to collecting data with respect to EFs and PFs, the IFS provided the breakdown of the relevant data with respect to both: (i) funds of funds (“FOF”), and (ii) stand-alone funds, where this distinction was applicable.
The IFS provided data with respect to both: (a) the aggregated net asset value (“NAV”) of EFs and PFs, as well as (b) the total number of EFs and PFs in Canada. This data was further broken down by FOF and stand-alone funds.
Most notably, there was an large increase in NAV held by PFs from 2020 to 2021. In 2021, the NAV held by FOF PFs totalled $934.55 billion, which represents a $169.64 billion increase in NAV over 2020. In the stand-alone PF category, there was an increase in NAV of $330 billion from 2021 over 2020; from $1.85 trillion in NAV in 2020 to $2.18 trillion in 2021. There were more modest increases in NAV with respect to EFs. The EF FOF category saw an increase of $27.91 billion in 2021 over 2020, from $132.95 billion in 2020 to $160.86 billion in 2021. In the stand-alone EF category, there was an increase in NAV of $70 billion; from $620 billion in 2020 to $690 billion in 2021.
The total number of EFs and PFs saw a slight increase in 2021 over 2020. In the EF category, there was an increase of 14 FOF over 2020, from 368 in 2020 to 382 in 2021 and an increase of 82 stand-alone funds over 2020, from 1,543 in 2020 to 1,625 in 2021.
The balance of the survey results focus on (i) an overview by product type, (ii) asset class and derivatives exposure by fund, (iii) fund liquidity measures, (iv) fund ownership details, and (v) finally data on subscriptions and redemptions, in each case, during the prescribed periods.
The full survey results are available on the OSC website.
Feel free to be in touch with the authors to discuss the trends we are witnessing in fund activities and some thoughts on the implications of these survey results.