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Canadian investment fund assets up 13 per cent YTD

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Total assets of Canadian investment funds were CAD573bn at the end of October, up 13 per cent from the start of the year and up 9.7 per cent from the previous year, according to the Investment Funds Institute of Canada.

Total assets were down 1.7 per cent from September.

Net sales were -CAD291.4m in October and were made up of CAD2.24bn in long-term fund sales and CAD2.54bn in money market fund redemptions.

Long-term fund sales have been steadily increasing each month since July and long-term fund sales year-to-date were CAD12bn compared to -CAD9.26bn at this point last year.

Fund of fund net sales have steadily increased each month since March. Fund of fund net sales were CAD1.13bn in October, up from CAD1.02bn last month and -CAD1.05bn at this point last year. Fund of fund net sales year-to-date totalled CAD6bin and were up from CAD3.59bn at this point last year.

Balanced funds led the way in net sales at CAD1.62bn, up from CAD1.32bn in September and -CAD2.57bn at this point last year. Balanced fund sales year-to-date were CAD7.51bn, up from CAD685.3m at this point last year.

Bond funds had net sales of CAD1.14bn in October, down from CAD1.66bn in the previous month but up from CAD915.8m last October. Bond fund sales year-to-date remained very strong at CAD9.8bn, up from -CAD654.8m at this point last year.

Equity fund net redemptions slowed substantially from the previous month and the previous year. Equity fund net redemptions were CAD512.2m in October and CAD4.83bn year-to-date compared with net redemptions of CAD2.4bn in October 2008 and year-to-date redemptions of CAD10.29bn at this point last year.

Canadian short term fixed income funds had the highest sales for the fourth straight month. Net sales were CAD699.5m in October, down slightly from CAD705.2m in September but up from -CAD23.3m last year. Canadian short term fixed income fund net sales year-to-date were CAD4.74bn – higher than any other CIFSC category. Year-to-date net sales were also up from -CAD578.5m at this point last year.

Moving from the third spot to the second spot was the global neutral balanced fund category. Global neutral balanced fund net sales were CAD425.9m in October, down from CAD476m in September but up from -CAD804.4m in October 2008.

Pat Dunwoody, vice president, member services and communications, says: "Looking back to where we were last year, I don’t think anyone would have predicted the robust market recovery we’ve had over the last eight months. Year-to-date, mutual fund investors have gained exposure to this recovery predominantly through balanced fund rather than equity fund purchases and we continue to see the bulk of long-term fund purchases going to the fixed income side of the business. To the extent that this reflects a determination among investors to better diversify their portfolios, then this is a good thing."

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