Mutual Fund Trends Worth Watching in 2023

Our Market Data Reports have been cited by:

View Slideshow (Click-Through)

Click right or left button to navigate. The slideshow is presenting a summary of the article.

Facts about this Market Data Report

Table of Contents

In today’s rapidly-evolving financial landscape, it has become increasingly vital for investors to stay informed about the latest developments and trends that impact the mutual fund industry. As an essential component of modern investment portfolios, mutual funds hold the potential to offer diversification, professional management, and growth opportunities.

In this illuminating blog post, we will delve deep into the most significant mutual fund trends that are shaping the industry and influencing investment strategies. By gaining a comprehensive understanding of these trends, investors will be better equipped to make informed decisions, optimizing their financial success in the long run.

Top Mutual Fund Trends

1. Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Investing

Increasing focus on sustainable and socially responsible investments that consider a company’s impact on the environment and society.

2. Thematic and Niche Funds

Investing in mutual funds focused on specific themes, sectors or trends, such as technology, artificial intelligence, biotechnology, or the gig economy.

3. Smart Beta and Factor Investing

Moving away from traditional market-cap weighted indices, these funds emphasize specific factors or investment styles, such as growth, value, or low volatility to provide better risk-adjusted returns.

4. Active ETFs

Actively managed exchange-traded funds are gaining popularity due to their lower fees compared to traditional actively managed mutual funds, their tax advantages, and the flexibility they provide for trading.

5. Robo-advisors and Digital Platforms

The rise in popularity of robo-advisors and digital platforms for investment management, which can create personalized portfolios composed of low-cost ETFs and mutual funds based on an investor’s risk profile and goals.

6. Fee Pressure

Investors’ focus on fees is leading to a price war among mutual fund providers, resulting in lower expense ratios and a proliferation of low-cost index and ETF options.

7. Multi-Asset and Goal-Based Funds

Investing in funds that allocate assets across different asset classes and investment strategies to achieve specific, pre-defined financial goals such as retirement, college savings or wealth accumulation.

8. Artificial Intelligence and Big Data

The use of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and big data analytics in the investment research and portfolio management process to provide better risk management and investment opportunities.

9. Global and Emerging Market Funds

Investors are increasingly looking for growth and diversification opportunities in global and emerging markets, making global and emerging market-focused mutual funds more popular.

10. Focus on Risk Management

New regulations and greater market volatility are pushing the mutual fund industry to invest more in risk management solutions, including targeted risk-parity funds and absolute return strategies.

11. Diversification through Alternative Investments

Mutual funds that invest in non-traditional assets like real estate, commodities, private equity, and infrastructure projects are gaining traction as investors seek to diversify their portfolios.

12. Direct Indexing

A trend in which individual investors can invest in custom tailored portfolios that replicate the holdings of an index with the option to exclude certain index constituents, thereby lowering fees and providing tax benefits.

These are some of the trends that are shaping the future of mutual funds, enabling investors to benefit from new investment opportunities and strategies.


The future of mutual fund investing is marked by an increasing focus on sustainability, customization, and cost efficiency. The growing interest in Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investing demonstrates investors’ heightened consideration of a business’s societal and environmental impacts.

Meanwhile, the rise of thematic and niche funds allows investors to concentrate on specific sectors or trends like AI, biotechnology, and the gig economy. Funds employing smart beta and factor investing strategies, as well as active ETFs, reflect the move towards more strategic and cost-efficient investment alternatives.

In addition, the popularity of robo-advisors and digital platforms is streamlining the investment process and allowing for personalized, low-cost portfolio management. This coincides with a growing emphasis on fee pressure, leading to lower expense ratios and more affordable investment options. To achieve specific financial goals, investors are increasingly attracted to multi-asset and goal-based funds, which allocate across different asset classes and strategies.

Simultaneously, the utilization of artificial intelligence and big data is enhancing the investment research process and paving the way for better risk management and opportunities.

Global and emerging market funds have become more popular as investors seek diversification and growth potential, while the industry’s focus on risk management continues to intensify due to market volatility and evolving regulations. Alternative investments, such as real estate and private equity, are gaining traction as investors aim for further portfolio diversification.

Lastly, direct indexing is transforming portfolio customization, allowing investors to replicate indices while excluding certain constituents, resulting in lower costs and tax benefits. These trends herald a dynamic and innovative future for mutual fund investing, equipping investors with an array of investment opportunities and strategies.


In conclusion, the ever-evolving mutual fund landscape is an essential topic for investors to keep an eye on as it shapes our collective financial future. Navigating the market’s inherent complexities requires staying informed on market trends, changes in regulatory frameworks, and the growing assortment of investment choices. The rise of ESG investing and the surging interest in passive index funds demonstrates that modern investors are evolving to find ideal investment strategies to meet their individual needs and values.

As technology and globalization continue to make the markets more interconnected, it is vital for investors to stay well-informed on mutual fund trends to make educated decisions that align with their financial objectives and risk tolerance.


What are the major trends currently shaping the mutual fund industry?

Some of the major trends shaping the mutual fund industry are the growing preference for low-cost index and exchange-traded funds, increased adoption of robo-advisors and digital investment platforms, expanding use of artificial intelligence and data analytics in fund management, increased focus on ESG (environmental, social, and governance) investing, and a continued shift towards globally diversified portfolios.

How has technology impacted the way investors approach mutual funds?

Technology has revolutionized the mutual fund industry in several ways. Investors now have easy access to information about mutual funds through online portals, comparison websites, and social media, which have made investments more informed and accessible. Digital investment platforms and robo-advisors have simplified the investment process, lowered costs, and allowed more personalization of portfolios based on individual investor risk profiles and goals.

How is ESG investing influencing the mutual fund landscape?

ESG investing has gained significant traction in the mutual fund industry in recent years. Investors, especially millennials, are increasingly looking for investments that align with their values, leading to a surge in demand for ESG-focused funds. These funds select companies that perform well in environmental, social, and governance factors to ensure sustainable long-term performance. Consequently, fund managers are taking ESG factors into consideration, and many new ESG-themed funds are being launched.

How has the COVID-19 pandemic impacted mutual fund trends?

The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted investors to reassess their investment strategies, leading to some noticeable trends in the mutual fund industry. Some of these include a heightened focus on risk management, an increased demand for fixed income and alternative investment funds, and the rapid growth of digital investment platforms due to increased usage during market volatility and social distancing measures.

What role do passive investment strategies play in the current mutual fund trends?

Passive investment strategies, like index funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs), have grown in popularity due to their lower fees and relative performance compared to actively managed funds. The increasing adoption of these strategies contributes to the migration of assets from traditional actively managed mutual funds to passively managed and low-cost alternatives, which may result in a shifting landscape for fund managers and investment companies.
Free Test

Leadership Personality Test

Avatar Group
No credit card | Results in 10 minutes

Personality Test

No credit card | Results in 10 minutes