Mar 30, 2020 - Economy & Business

The investment fee fall continues

Data: Investment Company Institute; Chart: Axios Visuals

As the popularity of passive investment vehicles has grown, money managers have consistently reduced their fees, particularly in stock funds and hybrid funds.

Driving the news: The cost of investing in equity and hybrid mutual funds through 401(k) plans fell again in 2018, a new report from the Investment Company Institute shows.

  • Despite the growth of ETFs, which still broadly have lower costs, mutual funds still represent the majority of assets held in 401(k) plans, ICI senior director of retirement and investor research Sarah Holden notes in a statement.

Between the lines: "Hybrid funds contain the bulk of 'alternative strategies' funds, which had a lot of demand between 2009 and 2013, and which generally have higher expense ratios," ICI associate economist James Duvall tells Axios in an email.

  • "These funds attracted $68 billion in net inflows, helping to boost their total net assets from $29 billion to $110 billion," during that four-year stretch.

Go deeper

Mark Zuckerberg: Social networks should not be "the arbiter of truth"

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg argued on CNBC's "Squawk Box" Thursday that social media platforms should not police political speech, and that "people should be able to see what politicians say.”

Why it matters: Zuckerberg was responding to Twitter's decision this week to fact-check a pair of President Trump's tweets that claimed that mail-in ballots are "substantially fraudulent." Twitter's label, which directs users to "get the facts" about mail-in voting, does not censor Trump's tweets.

House Democrats pull FISA reauthorization bill

Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

House Democrats pulled legislation Thursday that would have renewed expired domestic surveillance laws and strengthened transparency and privacy protections amid broad opposition from President Trump, House GOP leadership and progressive Democrats.

Why it matters: The failure to reauthorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) comes as Trump continues to attack the intelligence community, which he claims abused the law to surveil his 2016 campaign and Trump administration officials.

U.S. GDP drop revised lower to 5% in the first quarter

Data: Bureau of Economic Analysis; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. economy shrunk by an annualized 5% in the first quarter — worse than the initially estimated 4.8% contraction — according to revised figures released by the government on Thursday.

Why it matters: It's the worst quarterly decline since 2008 and shows a huge hit as the economy was just beginning to shut down because of the coronavirus. Economists are bracing for the second quarter's figures to be the worst ever — with some projecting an annualized decline of around 40%.

2 hours ago - Economy & Business