The number of launches of alternative and multi-asset funds has increased 15 percent since 2010, Cerulli Associates said Monday. 

"The market crisis was highly disruptive, temporarily halting new product introductions as budgets were slashed, but in the longer term it triggered creative disruption," Cindy Zarker, director at Cerulli, said in a report. "Five hundred new mutual funds have been created on average each year since 2010. Three of the most prominent areas of product innovation have been alternative investments, multi-strategy funds, and index-based strategies."

Several factors are driving the trend.

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