Mutual Funds Steady in March

April 26, 2004 ( - Mutual funds in March continued along the same path as they had in February as the funds (including exchange-traded funds) ended March with a $33-billion inflow—the same figure as was seen the month before, according to a Financial Research Corporation (FRC) report.

Once again, it was domestic equity funds that led net inflows among fund types, netting $19.8 billion, a decrease from the $22.6 billion recorded in February (See  FRC: February Fund Flow Loses Some Punch ), while International/Global came in second place in March with a $8.7 billion intake, down from February’s $9.4 billion.

Corporate bond funds were up in March with a $2.5 billion inflow – an increase over February’s $10 million. Government funds added $1.1 billion in March while tax-free funds tacked on $581 million.

Per Morningstar fund category, it was Moderate Allocation funds leading the way in March with a $6.6 billion inflow, followed by Large-Cap Value that accumulated $4.5 billion in the month. This was followed by Intermediate-Term Bond with a $2.6 increase, Foreign Large-Cap Blend with a $2.6 billion gain, and World Allocation with a $1.9 billion add on.

Fund Families

Vanguard Group and Fidelity Investments maintained the top fund group spots in March, as in February, with $659 billion and $646 billion, respectively.    Behind the two sizeable fund families in the total asset race were:

  • American Funds – $528 billion
  • Franklin Distributors Inc. – $197 billion
  • PIMCO Funds – $154 billion.

The five best sellers in March were American Funds with an inflow of $9.1 billion, Vanguard with an increase of $7.5 billion, Fidelity, which took in $3.1 billion, Barclays Global Investors Funds’ increase of $2.9 billion, and PIMCO Funds which saw an inflow of $2.3 billion.

Top Sellers

The five best selling individual funds in March were all American Funds:

  • American Funds Growth Fund – $1.9 billion
  • American Funds Balanced – $1.3 billion
  • American Funds Income Fund – $997 million
  • American Funds Cap World Growth and Income- $960 million
  • American Funds Cap Income Builder – $953 million.