Net inflows into U.S. stock and bond mutual funds came to $53 billion in February, lifting the total for the first two months of 2007 to just less than $110 billion a record pace for the start of a year, according to figures released by Strategic Insight, a research and money manager consulting firm. The figure excludes ETFs and variable annuities. Net inflows into international equity funds came to $20 billion, down from Januarys record monthly pace of $27 billion but still strong. In a sign of broad-based investor interest, net flows into U.S. equity and balanced funds came to $20 billion in February, the highest monthly total in roughly three years, according to a news release from Strategic Insight. Bond fund flows came to just less than $14 billion in February.
The latest strong inflows point to extraordinary confidence in mutual funds that should continue for the near term, Avi Nachmany, Strategic Insights director of research, said in the news release. Mr. Nachmany wasnt immediately available to comment on whether recent volatility in U.S. and international equity markets had dented that confidence.