Mutual Funds Scorecard: October 29 Edition

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Mutual Funds Scorecard for this week


Mutual Funds Scorecard: October 29 Edition

Iuri Struta Oct 29, 2019

Every fortnight, provides a snapshot of the performance of some key mutual funds which tries to accurately capture the investor interest in specific areas of the financial markets. The report is aimed at providing a quick overview of the sectors, regions and asset classes that moved in a meaningful manner during the last two weeks.
- The outflows from total long-term mutual funds have tempered for the two weeks ended October 16. While equity mutual funds posted negative flows of nearly $17 billion, bond mutual funds experienced around $10 billion in net inflows.
  • As a result, total long-term outflows were $8.5 billion the given the hybrid bonds also saw withdrawals. Domestic U.S. equities saw the highest amount of withdrawals along with multi-cap equities. On the other end of the spectrum were taxable and investment-grade bonds, which saw relatively high net inflows.
  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was very close to taking the U.K. out of the European Union by the October 31 deadline with a deal, but he lacked just a few votes in the British Parliament. As such, the European Union approved an extension of Britain’s exit until January 31, which could be instituted earlier if an agreement in the U.K. parliament is reached sooner. In another defeat for Johnson, the U.K. parliament rejected an early general election, although he is expected to try again.
  • Germany’s ZEW economic sentiment was largely unchanged in October at negative 22.5, the seventh negative consecutive month. Excluding April 2019, ZEW has not been positive since March 2018.
  • U.S. retail sales declined 0.3% in September, the first drop since May. Analysts had expected a rise of 0.3%. Core retail sales were down slightly by 0.1%, a figure not seen since April 2019.
  • Europe-wide manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) has been in contraction mode since January 2019. It was no surprise that the index came in at 45.7 in October, unchanged from the prior month.
  • Eurozone services PMI are still in expansion territory, although the expansion has been weak. The measure rose marginally from 51.6 to 51.8 – the weakest since 2014.
  • Eurozone has maintained its monetary policy unchanged at the last meeting presided by outgoing President Mario Draghi, who has been credited with saving the Eurozone at the height of the sovereign debt crisis in 2012. In his farewell address, Draghi said the monetary policy is losing some of its potency and called for fiscal support and deeper integration. Draghi will be replaced by Christine Lagarde, the former chief of the International Monetary Fund, on November 1.

Broad Indices

  • With President Trump signaling the signing of a potential trade deal with China, equities rallied over the past couple of weeks.
  • The U.S. Nasdaq 100 (NASDX) gained 2.35%, marginally beating other equity mutual funds.
  • Vanguard’s international bonds fund (VTIBX) and Vanguards total bond market index fund (VBMFX) were the worst performers this week, falling 0.17% and 0.18%, respectively.
Broad Indices Performance Oct 29, 2019

Major Sectors

  • With two exceptions, sectors were all up.
  • T. Rowe Price’s healthcare sector fund (THISX) was the best performer from the pack, rising 4.7%.
  • Meanwhile, T. Rowe Price’s information technology fund (PGTIX) dropped 1.52% over these past two weeks, representing the worst performance.
Major Sectors Performance Oct 29, 2019

Foreign Funds

  • All foreign equities were up.
  • Latin America equities fund (RLAIX) surged 4.25%, despite public disorder in a host of countries in the region, including Chile and Ecuador, and chaos in a Mexican city over the arrest of a narco kingpin.
  • The Chinese fund (MICDX) was the worst performer these past two weeks, with the rally induced by a potential trade deal with the U.S. tempered for the time being.
Foreign Funds Performance Oct 29, 2019

Major Asset Classes

  • All asset classes were up with two exceptions.
  • PMICO’s long-term bonds fund (PEDIX) was the worst performer for the past two weeks, losing 2.3% of their value.
  • Meanwhile, BlackRock’s small-cap fund (CSGEX) gained nearly 3%, which is the best performance in asset classes.

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Major Asset Classes Performance Oct 29, 2019

The Bottom Line

Mutual funds again experienced net outflows, with bonds seeing positive net flows and equities experiencing withdrawals. Technology stocks, Latin American equities and small-cap shares were among the best performers, while the Chinese stock market largely disappointed.

We provide this report on a fortnightly basis. To stay up to date with mutual fund market events, come back to our news page here.

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