NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. fund investors regained their risk appetite during the latest week, draining money market funds and pouring their cash into stocks after six straight weeks of withdrawals.
Stock exchange-traded funds in the United States attracted $9.2 billion during the week ended Aug. 30, the most since June, according to Lipper data on Thursday.
That more than offset the $3.1 billion that bled from equity mutual funds in the same period, the research service said. Mutual funds are heavily favored by retail investors, while ETFs draw a diverse set of clients, including fast-trading hedge funds.
Tom Roseen, head of research services for Thomson Reuters’ Lipper unit, said there is plenty to worry about with ongoing conflict between North Korea and the United States as well as “lofty” U.S. stock prices. Yet the global economy looks good.
“People were a little bit more aggressive,” Roseen said of ETF investors. “They were just focused on the good news.”
Funds focused on domestic shares pulled in $3.9 billion, the most since June. Internationally focused equity funds pulled in $2.2 billion, the most since July, Lipper said.
Money market funds, which have pulled in tens of billions this summer as calm markets turned turbulent, posted $19.9 billion in withdrawals during the latest week, the data showed.
But Roseen said uncertainty is keeping demand up for some safe-haven investments. Gold is trading at $1,321 an ounce, up nearly 9 percent from early July.
Precious metals commodities funds, which invest directly in gold and other similar assets, pulled in $766 million in their largest week of inflows since June. The VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF pulled in $213 million, the most since March. That fund buys shares in companies that produce bullion.
Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt; Editing by Jennifer Ablan and Andrew Hay