Bond Funds Continue to Dominate in Fund Flows

October 6, 2009 ( - Strong long-term fund flows persisted in August, and the recent pattern of greater flows into bond funds continued as well, according to Strategic Insight, an Asset International company.

Investors deposited $43 billion into bond funds and $12 billion into equity/hybrid funds over the month. U.S. Equity funds saw $4 billion of inflows in August, while International/Global Equity posted $47 billion in inflows, SI data showed.

Taxable bond funds collectively garnered $33 billion, while flows into U.S. Government Bond funds rose from the prior month’s $3.5 billion, to $5 billion. Flows into Inflation-indexed Bond funds remained strong and steady at $2.6 billion as did those into multi-sector Strategic Income funds, at $1.5 billion. Expectations of further US dollar weakening aided in more than doubling flows into Global Bond funds, to $4.5 billion.

However, in a switch from the experience in the prior month, international equity funds lagged U.S. equity funds in August in terms of asset-weighted average returns and ended up drawing a smaller percentage of total equity fund flows (about 60% in August, down from about 75% in July).

Flows into International/Global Equity funds slowed somewhat compared to July, primarily as a result of investors pulling back from diversified Emerging Market and China Region funds following slowing growth, Strategic Insight said. August’s international/global equity fund flows came almost entirely within actively managed funds.

Money-market mutual fund assets declined by another $45 billion or so in August as a result of continued shifts to higher-yielding investments. Flows into both lifecycle strategy and other kinds of funds-of-funds remained steady, bringing in $5.3 billion collectively. Year-to-date, funds-of-funds have brought in a total of $27 billion in net new cash flows.

ETF/ETN flows moderated in August, to $7 billion, and were driven by Dedicated Short-Bias, Commodities, Small-cap Core and Real Estate products. Year-to-date through August, ETFs/ETNs have collectively drawn an estimated $55 billion in net new flows.

The SI data showed that among the largest firms (firms with more than $20 billion in long-term fund assets under management), those garnering the most long-term fund flows were Vanguard ($11 billion), PIMCO/Allianz Global ($8.7 billion), Fidelity ($3.4 billion), JPMorgan Funds ($2.6 billion), Barclays Global Investors ($2.2 billion), Franklin Templeton ($2 billion), DFA ($1.9 billion), SSgA ($1.7 billion), and BlackRock ($1.5 billion).

Among smaller-size managers of long-term funds, those that led in total long-term fund flows in August were TCW, Rafferty Asset Management, Manning & Napier, Lazard Asset Management, Rydex Investments, and InvescoPowerShares.

SI’s Highlights of August 2009 Mutual Fund Industry Results includes more detailed information on fund flows by investor style and by business sector, and provides information on new fund launches. More information is at .