NU Online News Service, April 25, 2003, 4:37 p.m. EST -? U.S. stock and bond mutual funds attracted only $12 billion more cash in March than they lost, down from a net inflow of $35 billion for March 2002, according to Financial Research Corp., Boston.

Domestic stock funds saw their net inflow fall to $2 billion, from $26 billion, while international and global stock funds suffered a net outflow of $716 million, down from a net inflow of $2.4 billion.

Because of asset outflows and the weakness of the investment markets, total stock and bond fund assets fell to $3.6 trillion March 31, down 15% from a year earlier.

But the net flow into government bonds increased to $2.8 billion, from $1.1 billion, and the biggest winners of all were issuers of corporate bonds. Despite well-publicized defaults by some issuers in recent years, corporate bond funds are reporting net inflows of $7.6 billion for March, up from a net inflow of $5.4 billion for March 2002.