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Equity inflows rebound after two weeks of losses-Lipper
March 1, 2012 / 11:20 PM / 5 years ago

Equity inflows rebound after two weeks of losses-Lipper

 By Daniel Bases	
 NEW YORK, March 1 (Reuters) - U.S. fund investors
turned positive on equities with domestic funds garnering most
of the fresh cash, while municipal bond funds held onto positive
territory although their inflows dwindled to a three-month low,
data from Thomson Reuters' Lipper showed on Thursday.	
 In the week ended Feb. 29, U.S. equity funds pulled in a net
$7.5 billion in new investment, with domestic equities providing
$6.6 billion of the total.	
 The flow data, however, represents a mixed bag of sorts with
two large exchange traded funds tracking the U.S. benchmark
Standard & Poor's 500 stock index moving in opposite
directions. ETFs anecdotally are thought to represent
institutional investor behavior.	
 While not unprecedented, the large-cap State Street SPDR S&P
500 ETF pulled in a net $4.7 billion while the BlackRock
iShares S&P 500 index fund had net outflows of $742 million.	
 "With this type of mixed bag we are seeing in the market
people are going to interpret it in different ways. Either they
see a risk play as intact or they take a cautious stance where
the signals are pointing to trouble ahead," said Matthew
Lemieux, research analyst at Lipper.	
 "This could be due to big institutional players, where one
guy might say buy and another might say the 13,000 on the Dow
(Jones industrial average) is a place to take money off the
table. There is no clear direction for the market in terms of
all asset classes," he said.	
 Tax-free U.S. municipal bond funds pulled in a net $357
million while taxable bond funds had a muted inflow of just over
$3 billion, their weakest showing since the first week of the
 Investors maintain a bias for income producing investments,
extending themselves for yield and with it higher risk. In that
vein, corporate high yield bond funds pulled in $565 million
while investment grade bond funds had net inflows of $970
 Equity income funds scooped up $539 million in the latest
week, extending their inflow streak from early May.	
 At the same time U.S. stocks, which represent higher risk
assets, are at multi-year highs, the traditional safe haven of
gold is seeing prices hold above $1,700 an ounce, even after
taking a more than 5 percent tumble on Wednesday. 	
 The selling ensued after U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben
Bernanke did not signal more monetary easing was imminent. Loose
monetary policy has been a key support for gold's 9.8 percent
rise so far this year. And while spot gold prices fell 4.60
percent in the course of the reporting week, the inflows into
the world largest gold-backed ETF hit a 16-week high of $688
 The weekly Lipper fund flow data is compiled from reports
issued by U.S.-domiciled mutual funds and exchange-traded funds.	
 The following is a broad breakdown of the flows for the
week, including exchange-traded funds (in $ billions): 	
 Sector                    Flow Chg  %       Assets       Count
                        ($Bil)    Assets  ($Bil)       
 All Equity Funds          7.469     0.26    2,847.050    10,334
 Domestic Equities         6.582     0.31    2,152.722    7,780
 Non-Domestic Equities     0.887     0.13    694.328      2,554
 All Taxable Bond Funds    3.010     0.22    1,375.041    4,501
 All Money Market Funds    -7.049    -0.30   2,369.743    1,460
 All Municipal Bond Funds  0.357     0.12    288.063      1,400
 (Reporting By Daniel Bases)	

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