Cathie Wood Storms Back as ARKK, Space Fund Lure $1 Billion

A pair of Cathie Wood exchange-traded funds added around $1 billion in a single day this week in an emphatic display of investor loyalty toward the famed Ark Investment Management founder.

The flagship Ark Innovation ETF (ticker ARKK) took in a record $717 million on Tuesday, while the Ark Space Exploration and Innovation fund (ARKX) absorbed $281 million on its debut, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Alongside bumper trading volumes on the day, it all adds up to one of the best-ever ETF launches for the fund, which tracks U.S. and global companies engaged in space exploration and innovation.

Cathie Wood Storms Back as ARKK, Space Fund Lure $1 Billion

The launch was seen as a key test of Wood’s appeal after a volatile few months of flows and performance. After one of the strongest performances of 2020, ARKK has dropped 3.7% this year amid a rough patch for tech shares. Before a flood of cash this week, Ark’s main fund had posted five consecutive days of outflows, its longest streak on record.

“This is investors taking advantage to jump in after the drop from the top,” said Athanasios Psarofagis, ETF analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence. “You can see some investors were shaken out because there were some days of outflows during this period but for the most part people held strong so the demand is still there.”

ARKK was up 3.1% as of 9:41 a.m. in New York on Thursday, while the space fund rose 1.3%.

Cathie Wood Storms Back as ARKK, Space Fund Lure $1 Billion

Ark’s investing strategy and success in luring new cash has spurred big bets on small companies, raising concern the firm exerts an outsize influence over the shares its holds. Wood handed fresh ammunition to her critics last week in a filing that removed prospectus clauses limiting exposure and concentration risks in its ETFs.

Bearish bets have been building in ARKK, with short interest climbing to 4.9% of shares outstanding, according to data from IHS Markit Ltd, nearing the record 5.3% hit in early March.

Still, none of that has taken any shine off the space fund, with Wood’s first new ETF in two years seeing $294 million worth of shares change hands on its first day.

The product’s top two holdings are Trimble Inc. and another Ark vehicle, the 3D Printing ETF (PRNT). Other large stakes include Kratos Defense & Security Solutions Inc., L3Harris Technologies Inc. and JD.com Inc., an online retailer in China.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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