A record $24 billion of investment funds had flowed out of equities in the United States by yesterdayâ??s market close for the week through Feb. 5, according to EPFR Global, a fund research company. Of that total, $14.8 billion flowed out into global debt, with the lionâ??s share of that amount — $13.8 billion — going directly to U.S. bond funds. Demand for these â??saferâ?ť securities arose from a slowdown in U.S. jobs growth and emerging market turmoil. In addition, the U.S. decision to taper another $10 billion per month from its stimulus purchases led investors to flee higher-risk assets like stocks. What this outflow of funds will do for bond prices going forward is anyoneâ??s guessâ?¦ but investors chasing yield may want to look to real estate investment trusts (REITs) for a better return on their money.
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