Long-term open-end funds saw inflows of $243.2 billion in 2012, according to Morningstar. Money continued to flow out of actively managed stock funds and into all manner of bond funds, with yields across many fixed-income sectors either at or near all-time lows. Since the end of 2008, assets in taxable-bond funds have more than doubled, climbing from $1.1 trillion to $2.5 trillion, with approximately 65 percent of the increase attributable to net inflows. When municipal-bond funds are included, inflows for fixed-income funds have exceeded $1.0 trillion since the beginning of 2008.
Additional highlights from Morningstar's report on mutual fund flows:
- 2012 outflows from actively managed U.S.-stock mutual funds surpassed those seen in 2008 despite the fact that the S&P 500 was up 16 percent for the year. Even when exchange-traded funds are included, large-cap U.S.-stock funds have seen net outflows over the trailing five-year period and in each of the last four years.
- Intermediate-term bond funds attracted the greatest inflows of any Morningstar Category for the fourth year in a row, taking in $109.9 billion in 2012. This was almost three times the inflows of $37.5 billion seen by the runner-up, short-term bond.
- Vanguard and PIMCO captured 61 percent of net inflows in 2012, compared with 30 percent in 2011 and 46 percent in 2009.
- DoubleLine Total Return Bond, which has a Morningstar Analyst Rating of Neutral, tallied 2012 inflows of $19.6 billion to edge out Gold-rated PIMCO Total Return, which collected $18.0 billion, for the year's greatest open-end fund inflows. The inclusion of BOND, the ETF incarnation of PIMCO Total Return that saw inflows of $3.8 billion in 2012, would move Bill Gross into first place in terms of overall inflows.