05 Oct 2012, by
The bumpy end to the third-quarter seems to have taken a toll on investors’ willingness to own equity mutual funds, as withdrawals from these investments totaled $2.4 billion during the week ended October 3, 2012.
That’s the eighth week in a row in which investors have withdrawn assets from equity mutual funds, with U.S. stock funds bearing the brunt of those outflows. Net redemptions in that category hit $2.6 billion during the period, with even Lipper’s Equity Income Funds group – which has tended to remain appealing to investors – reporting outflows for the week, even though that figure was a meager $500,000 or so.
In some recent weeks, equity ETFs have continued to see inflows even as mutual funds have recorded net redemptions. This week, that pattern changed. After injecting a net $27.8 billion into ETFs over the previous three weeks, ETF investors switched gears, withdrawing $440 million from these investments in the period ended October 3.
Once more, safety seemed to be back in favor. Taxable bond funds reported inflows of $2.4 billion during the period, while the riskier high-yield bond funds witnessed net redemptions of about $400 million on top of a loss of $500 million in assets in the prior week Investors found international and global funds more appealing; that group attracted some $470 million during the period. Tax-exempt municipal bond funds also saw their coffers swell, reporting inflows of about $550 million, extending their streak of uninterrupted inflows to 27 weeks.