April 28, 2005 — Cash flow into stock funds declined in March compared to the prior month, according to data released today by the Investment Company Institute (ICI). Equity portfolios took in about $15.0 billion in net new cash in March, versus inflows of $22.2 billion in February.
The ICI said that among stock funds, world equity funds, or funds that invest primarily overseas, had an inflow of $11.9 billion in March, versus a similar inflow of $11.9 billion in February. Funds that invest primarily in the U.S. had an inflow of $3.1 billion in March, compared with an inflow of $10.3 billion in February.
Year-to-date through the end of March, stock funds have received about $47.2 billion in net new cash, far below the $84.7 billion figure recorded in the year-ago period.
Louis Harvey, president of Dalbar Inc., a Boston-based mutual fund consultant, attributed the falling stock fund inflows primarily to the “volatile markets and declining consumer confidence.”
Long-term funds — stock, bond, and hybrid funds — collectively had a net inflow of $18.1 billion in March, compared with net inflow of $29.2 billion in February.
Bond funds reversed course, reporting an outflow of $800 million in March, following an inflow of $2.6 billion in February. Taxable bond funds had an outflow of $505 million in March, compared with an inflow of $1.9 billion in February. Municipal bond funds had an outflow of $295 million in March, versus an inflow of $739 million in February.