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Bad timing? Investors yanked $1.1 billion from stocks

March 6, 2013: 1:05 PM ET

For the first time this year, investors took money off the table.

According to the latest data from the Investment Company Institute, investors pulled $1.13 billion from U.S. stock mutual funds during the week ended Feb. 27. That's the first time investors took money out of stocks this year, and it came just days before the Dow hit a record high.

But that doesn't mean the tide has turned. One week of outflows is not a trend. And after yanking more than $150 billion from U.S. stocks during each of the past three years, investors still have plenty of money sitting on the sidelines.

Stocks have continued to head higher thanks to a string of better-than-expected economic reports and stimulus moves by the Federal Reserve.

Add to that the fact that the U.S. economy did not fall off the fiscal cliff, and things are looking up. Even the forced budget cuts, aka the sequester, aren't getting investors down.

"As we get further and further away from the crisis, people get more confident," said Doug DePietro, managing director in institutional equities at Evercore Partners. "I wouldn't take too much from one week's data."

So far this year, investors have put roughly $20 billion into U.S. stocks. International stocks are also drawing strong interest. In the latest week, international stock funds attracted $2.18 billion, bringing the year-to-date tally to just over $34 billion.

"People still want to own the market," said DePietro.

Related: Dow at a record...sort of

But bonds, which are perceived as less risky than stocks, continue to attract solid interest as well. Bond funds took in nearly $5 billion last week, bringing the year's total to just over $50 billion. Hybrid funds, which invest in both stocks and bonds, brought in $2.4 billion last week.

  • Investors' rush into stocks slows

    Investors have been adding money to the U.S. stock market since the beginning of the year, but the pace of inflows has slowed considerably.

    U.S. stock mutual funds lured in just $509 million during the week ended Feb. 13, according to data from the Investment Company Institute. While that marks the sixth straight week of inflows, it's the smallest of the year. During the first four weeks of 2013, investors MORE

    - Feb 21, 2013 2:06 PM ET
  • Investors pour record $8 billion into U.S. stocks

    After yanking more than $150 billion from U.S. stock mutual funds last year, investors began to put their money back into the market at the start of 2013. A lot of it.

    U.S. stock mutual funds gained $8 billion in the week ended Jan. 9, according to the Investment Company Institute. That's the highest amount since the ICI began keeping records in 2007.

    The big flood of money came as the MORE

    - Jan 17, 2013 10:02 AM ET
  • Investors yank $3.7 billion out of stocks

    The move out of the U.S. stock market continued through the final week of summer, as investors remained stuck in a rut and refrained from making any big moves ahead of Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke's big speech in Jackson Hole.

    In fact, investors pulled another $3.7 billion from U.S. stock market mutual funds during the week ended Aug. 31, according to the Investment Company Institute, bringing the 2012 outflow MORE

    - Sep 6, 2012 10:22 AM ET
  • Investors still dumping stocks. But they love ETFs.

    Investors continued to bail out of U.S. stock mutual funds last week, despite a rally in the market fueled by an upbeat July jobs report and hopes that central bankers will soon step in to support financial markets.

    Investors pulled $3.6 billion out of U.S. stock mutual funds during the week ended Aug. 8, according to Investment Company Institute. While the pace of outflows slowed considerably from the prior week, when MORE

    - Aug 16, 2012 2:04 PM ET
  • Investors yank $5.7 billion from U.S. stocks - most in 10 weeks

    The flight out of U.S. stocks picked up speed last week, as investors were left disappointed by the Federal Reserve's failure to take steps to stimulate the economy.

    Investors yanked $5.7 billion out of U.S. stock mutual funds during the week ended Aug. 1, more than twice the amount pulled during the prior week, and the most since the week ended May 23. The outflow was also the fourth-biggest this year.

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    - Aug 9, 2012 9:31 AM ET
  • Investors dip a toe back in the stock market

    Investors have mostly been pulling their money out of the stock market this year, but last week investors showed a little ounce of love for stocks.

    According to the Investment Company Institute, investors added $99 million to U.S. stock mutual funds in the week ended July 18. While that's not much, it's a welcome change from the usual flight from stocks.

    The inflow came as investors hoped that the Federal Reserve may MORE

    - Jul 26, 2012 2:12 PM ET
  • Investor flight out of stocks continues

    Investors continued to flee the stock market last week, as they digested a deal by eurozone political leaders to stabilize credit markets and strengthen the region's banking system, and received further evidence of a U.S. economic slowdown.

    U.S. stock mutual funds lost $3.1 billion during the week ended July 3, according to the Investment Company Institute. Investors have now withdrawn money from the stock market for 19 of the past 20 weeks.

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  • Hedge funds lost $5.1 in outflows in April

    After six months of losing to the broader market, hedge funds finally beat the S&P 500's performance in April, slipping only 0.6% compared to the index's 0.8% decline. But that wasn't enough to lure in investors.

    Hedge funds, which have an estimated $1.7 trillion in assets combined, saw investors sell off an estimated $5.1 billion worth in April, reversing two consecutive months of inflows, according to a monthly report from investment research MORE

    - Jun 12, 2012 4:59 PM ET
  • Investors end 14-week stock exodus

    In an unexpected twist, investors added money to U.S. stocks during the final week of May, even as the market closed out one of the its worst months in years.

    According to the Investment Company Institute, investors added $807 million to U.S. stock mutual funds in the week ended May 30. While that's not much at all, the sudden move ends a 14-week-long exodus out of stocks. In fact, the inflows follow MORE

    - Jun 6, 2012 3:45 PM ET
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