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Equity funds lose $37 billion in March, EM adds $1.5 billion offset

Equity mutual funds lost $37.1 billion in net outflows during the first three weeks of April despite an overall positive first third of the year. U.S. equity funds lost the lion's share, with $23.6 billion walking out the door in April, about half of the year's total net outflows. International equity funds saw $13.5 billion in net outflows in April and a total $15 billion year-to-date.

Since the start of 2017, U.S. equity funds have lost more than $500 billion in assets, with net outflows every month except January 2019.

Emerging markets have been a bright spot for managers. April's $1.5 billion net inflow was the fourth consecutive month of positive client flows.

U.S. equity markets, as measured by the Russell 3000 index, have gained 17.9% so far in 2019, while international equities are up 13.2% (MSCI ACWI ex-U.S. IMI index). The MSCI Emerging Markets index is up 11.7% year-to-date.