Having posted their biggest collective inflow in over six months during the week ending Jan. 10, EPFR-tracked Equity Funds absorbed another $23.8 billion going into the second half of the month, as key global equity indexes continue to post multiyear and record highs. That is their best start of a year since 2013, when the more than $40 billion absorbed by this fund group during the first 17 days of the year fueled talk of a “great rotation” from Bond to Equity Funds.
In contrast to the previous week, when flows as a percentage of assets under management were in the same ballpark, commitments to Bond Funds were well off the pace for Equity Funds—up 0.11 percent vs. 0.22 percent—during the seven days ending Jan. 17. Investors retained their appetite for Emerging Markets Funds, with both EM Bond and Equity Funds attracting over $3 billion as they extended inflow streaks stretching back to the first half of December.
The week saw a milestone for Exchange Traded Funds, with the collective AUM for those tracked by EPFR moving north of the $5 trillion mark.
While keen to get broad exposure to the global growth story, investors showed much less appetite for individual markets. Furthermore, the single Country Fund groups that did attract new money in mid-January were frequently dedicated to smaller markets.
At the single country and asset class fund levels, Vietnam Equity Funds chalked up their second inflow record in the past four weeks, Malaysia Equity Funds extended their recent run of inflows and commitments to Russia Equity Funds climbed to a 50-week high. Inflation Protected Bond Funds took in fresh money for the 13th consecutive week as they posted a new inflow record. And flows into Convertible Bond Funds hit an 11-week high while High Yield Bond Funds posted outflows for the 10th time in the past 12 weeks.