Investors pull most cash from U.S. stock funds since election: ICI

FILE PHOTO - U.S. one hundred dollar bills are seen in this picture illustration, August 2, 2013. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji/Illustration/File Photo - RTSX1GG

(Reuters) - Investors sold U.S.-based domestic stock funds at the fastest pace since equities leapt following the presidential election, Investment Company Institute data for the latest week showed on Wednesday.

Stock funds based and invested in the United States posted withdrawals of $3.7 billion during the week that ended Jan. 18, according to the trade group. That is the largest outflow for the funds since the election-week period ended Nov. 9, when outflows approached $6.4 billion.

President Donald Trump was sworn into office last Friday. He and his Republican party, which controls Congress, have touted potential new economic stimulus measures, such as tax cuts.

Those efforts could propel stocks, and investors on Wednesday lifted the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI above the symbolic 20,000 threshold for the first time.

But domestic equity fund sales have taken a pause since they totaled $23 billion in November as investors take stock of an unformed policy agenda.

Meanwhile, taxable bond funds added $3.5 billion in their seventh straight week netting cash. Including municipal bonds, U.S.-based bond funds took in $4.7 billion altogether during the week, ICI said.

U.S.-based fixed-income funds lost $13 billion to withdrawals in November as stimulus policies raised the prospect of bond-harming inflation. Yet bond funds have continued to attract money since then.

Commodity funds, included those that buy gold, netted their first week of cash in 10, attracting $231 million, the data showed.

Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt; Editing by Richard Borsuk