401(k) Participants Continue International Flight

April 10, 2006 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - The flow of 401(k) plan assets into International and emerging market funds continued during March as it had through the first quarter, according to Hewitt Associates latest 401(k) asset flow data.

The Hewitt data shows more than $750 million flowed into international and emerging market equity funds over the first quarter (See  401(k) Participants Continue Move to International Funds ) – the largest net inflows into such funds of any quarter since the inception of Hewitt’s 401(k) Index. Small-cap equity funds were also strong during the quarter with a $489 million inflow.

Hewitt said in a news release that overall, over the month, daily net transfer activity was slightly above average at 0.04% with two above normal days. The trailing 12-month average for net transfer activity was 0.037%. There were 13 days in which fixed income was more prominent and 10 primarily equity traded days, Hewitt said.

On the losing end in terms of assets flows in the first quarter were company stock, large-cap equity funds, GIC/stable value and bond funds.  During March, 46.3% of outflows were from company stock, while  19.8% and 12.79% of outflows were from largeUS equity funds and bond funds, respectively.   Experiencing inflows during the month were International funds (42.79%), Small US equity (40.74%) and Lifecycle (7.89%).

In terms of asset allocation, company stock holds 22.2% of 401(k) assets, Large US equity holds 21.3% and GIC/stable value holds 20.7%.

The March and first quarter Hewitt report is  here .