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Mutual funds

Long-term open-end US mutual funds saw inflows of USD243.2bn in 2012

Long-term open-end US mutual funds saw inflows of USD243.2bn in 2012, according to figures released by Morningstar.

Money continued to flow out of actively managed stock funds and into all manner of bond funds, with yields across many fixed income sectors either at or near all-time lows.

Since the end of 2008, assets in taxable-bond funds have more than doubled, climbing from USD1.1trn to USD2.5trn, with approximately 65 percent of the increase attributable to net inflows. When municipal bond funds are included, inflows for fixed income funds have exceeded USD1.0trn since the beginning of 2008.

2012 outflows from actively managed US-stock mutual funds surpassed those seen in 2008 despite the fact that the S&P 500 was up 16 per cent for the year. Even when exchange-traded funds are included, large-cap US-stock funds have seen net outflows over the trailing five-year period and in each of the last four years.

Intermediate-term bond funds attracted the greatest inflows of any Morningstar category for the fourth year in a row, taking in USD109.9bn in 2012. This was almost three times the inflows of USD37.5bn seen by the runner-up, short-term bond.

Vanguard and PIMCO captured 61 percent of net inflows in 2012, compared with 30 per cent in 2011 and 46 per cent in 2009.

DoubleLine Total Return Bond, which has a Morningstar Analyst Rating of Neutral, tallied 2012 inflows of USD19.6bn to edge out Gold-rated PIMCO Total Return, which collected USD18bn, for the year's greatest open-end fund inflows. The inclusion of BOND, the ETF incarnation of PIMCO Total Return that saw inflows of USD3.8bn in 2012, would move Bill Gross into first place in terms of overall inflows.   

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