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Commentary

Funds Flows Sluggish in August

Intermediate-term bond funds remain popular kids, and emerging-markets funds get some attention, too.

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August was a slow month, with markets relatively flat and no dramatic movement in flows. Both the S&P 500 and the MSCI EAFE returned a barely-there 0.1% for the month. U.S. equity funds continued to bleed cash on the active side. Passive U.S.-equity funds continued to attract investor money, although August’s estimated inflow of $16.4 billion was only half as large as the $33.8 billion they received in July.

The international-equity story is similar: outflows from active and inflows to passive. Although, when digging deeper into the numbers, an important detail comes to light: The total international-equity flow for August consists of an estimated $7.3 outflow from developed markets and a $6.2 inflow to emerging markets.

Alina Lamy does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.