February 25, 2016 / 10:52 PM / 4 years ago

U.S.-based stock funds post eighth straight week of outflows: Lipper

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S.-based stock funds posted $2.8 billion in outflows during the week that ended Feb. 24, Lipper data showed on Thursday, adding an eighth week to the funds’ streak of outflows.

The withdrawals from stock funds - combined with massive inflows into taxable bond funds and the largest precious-metals commodity fund inflows since Lipper started keeping records in 2011 - came as investors continued to show trepidation about global economic growth.

U.S.-based precious-metals commodity funds took in $2.3 billion during the week, Lipper said.

“We started the year off horribly - I don’t think there’s been a worse January in history,” said Jeff Tjornehoj, head of Americas research at Lipper. “That sets the tone for investor expectations.”

Precious-metals commodity inflows show an investor who is “extremely concerned about central-bank maneuvers,” Tjornehoj said, as gold is seen as a store of value. “And with high-yield you have people trying to take advantage of a low point in the market.”

Across the board it was a bad week for stock funds.

Outflows were spread across geographic regions. Domestic-focused stock funds posted $2.5 billion in outflows during the week, while the funds’ non-domestic counterparts posted $231 million in outflows.

Funds focused on China, Europe, Japan and emerging markets all posted outflows.

In the United States, of the sector funds Lipper tracks, only utilities posted inflows. The funds took in $135 million that week, their seventh straight week of positive flows.

Funds focused on energy, financial, healthcare, real estate and technology companies all posted outflows.

U.S.-based taxable bond funds attracted $5.1 billion during the same period, their fifth consecutive week drawing in net new money, Lipper said.

Safe-haven U.S. Treasury funds took in $440 million during the week, their 11th week of inflows, Lipper data showed.

Riskier assets also took in money. Investment-grade corporate debt funds took in $142 million, offering relief from net withdrawals of $19 billion over the prior 13 weeks. High-yield bond funds took in $2.7 billion during the week, their best result since October. And emerging-market debt funds attracted $28 million during the week, the first inflows for those funds since October, Lipper said.

Relatively low-risk money-market funds took in $3.5 billion in the weekly period, according to the fund research service.

Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt; Editing by Chris Reese and Jonathan Oatis

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