NYSE Margin debt falls in April for 2nd straight month

NEW YORK Tue May 20, 2014 2:26pm EDT

NEW YORK May 20 (Reuters) - The value of equities investors bought on the New York Stock Exchange with borrowed money fell 2.9 percent in April from the previous month, marking the second straight monthly decline after reaching a record high in February.

NYSE margin debt accounts totaled $437.2 billion in April, down from $450.3 billion in March and the record $465.7 billion in February, exchange data showed on Tuesday.

Margin debt is one way to measure how much risk hedge funds and other large investors are taking to enhance their returns through the use of borrowed cash. Extremely high readings are seen as a gauge of overly bullish sentiment. (Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak; Editing by Chris Reese)

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