'Bad Goldilocks' emerges as market's worst enemy

Long road ahead for markets

Remember "Goldilocks," that pristine economic condition where growth was strong but not so strong as to induce tighter Fed policy? Well, now meet her evil twin.

This is the new state of affairs in the U.S., where growth isn't strong enough to inspire much confidence but not weak enough to induce easing from the U.S. central bank.

It's an uncomfortable place for investors, evidenced by a move away from stocks despite a strong week for the markets.

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Global equity funds surrendered a net $12.2 billion in outflows last week, the highest level of redemptions in five months and the seventh consecutive week of net outflows, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch, whose chief investment strategist Michael Hartnett used the "bad Goldilocks" term to frame the current situation.