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Roughly 170 billion in assets migrated from mutual fuinds to ETFs last year.

Total ETF assets increased by $49 billion, or 10.2%, for the month, to $531 billion at the end of April, according to State Street Global Advisors' (STT) April ETF Snapshot report. The ongoing net flows of money out of open-end mutual funds and into ETFs is mainly the result of the drop in the stock market in the last few months of 2008 which "freed up the tax handcuffs" among investors.  The poor performance by many mutual funds, coupled with the capital gains distributions they had to pay out, only added to investors' eagerness to shift into tax-efficient ETFs.