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Managed Portfolios Get Boost

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How much money are financial advisors pouring into managed ETF portfolios? A lot.

Through the first quarter of 2014, assets in managed ETF portfolios grew 8% and collectively held $103 billion, a 40% increase compared to March 2013, according to Morningstar.

The growth trajectory of managed ETF portfolios is a signal of steady demand from advisors.

The top three performing managed ETF portfolios over the past five years ending March 30, 2014 were the Keystone Wealth Global Equity AlphaRotation (30.64%), Winterset Active/Edge ETF Growth (26.31%) and Keystone Wealth Com AlphaRotation (24.80%).

Investment strategies with more than 50% of portfolio assets invested in exchange-traded funds are classified as ETF managed portfolios by Morningstar. Most of these portfolios are available as separate accounts and are one of the fastest-growing segments of the managed-account universe.

U.S. equity strategies collectively held $36 billion in assets and led all categories by assets under management.

Professional money managers are using ETFs in pre-packaged portfolios that target investment strategies like sector rotation, long/short and high yield debt.

Morningstar tracked 660 strategies from 151 firms as of the end of March 2014