Fund investors continue largest pullback from U.S. stocks since '13

David Randall

NEW YORK, Oct 16 (Reuters) - Investors continued the largest retreat from the U.S. stock market since at least 2013 by pulling nearly $10.9 billion from mutual funds and exchange-traded funds that hold domestic equities last week, according to data released Wednesday by the Investment Company Institute. The withdrawals pushed the total losses from stock funds to $36.6 billion over the last 3 weeks, the first time in ICI records going back to 2013 that investors had pulled $10 billion or more from U.S. stock funds over three consecutive weeks. Weak manufacturing data and concerns that the trade war between the U.S. and China could lead to a global economic recession have weighed heavily on investor sentiment, leaving the benchmark S&P 500 trading in a relatively narrow range. The index is up slightly more than 19% for the year to date, largely due to expectations that the Federal Reserve will continue its series of equity-friendly interest rate cuts. Investors continued to seek the perceived safety of bonds, sending slightly more than $5.8 billion into taxable and municipal debt funds. For the year to date, the category has brought in nearly $333.2 billion in new assets, compared with a nearly $114 billion in withdrawals from U.S. stock funds. World stock funds, meanwhile, notched a five-week losing streak by dropping another $660 million in outflows. Investors have pulled slightly more than $40.5 billion from the category since the beginning of the year.

The following is a broad breakdown of the flows for the week, including mutual funds and exchange-traded funds:

10/9/201 10/2/201 9/25/20 9/18/2 9/11/201

9 9 19 019 9Equity -11,528 -13,852 -15,779 10,032 7,551Domestic -10,868 -11,812 -13,957 11,804 8,598World -660 -2,040 -1,822 -1,771 -1,047Hybrid -688 -1,147 -1,918 -843 -687Bond 5,809 8,418 6,864 9,290 13,021Taxable 3,856 6,803 4,587 8,902 11,734Municipal 1,953 1,615 2,277 387 1,287Commodity 425 489 2,356 260 -396Total -5,981 -6,091 -8,478 18,740 19,489

(Reporting by David Randall Editing by Nick Zieminski)