LONDON (Reuters) – Investors pulled out of most asset classes, with stocks and bond funds seeing a combined $36 billion of outflows in the week to Wednesday, BofA said, amid fears of economic damage from the coronavirus epidemic.
Stock markets have been selling off since mid-February, wiping out roughly $6.5 trillion of market values, as the number of coronavirus cases climbed higher.
Analysts at BofA, parsing weekly data from flow tracking specialist EPFR, said $23.3 billion was pulled out of equity funds and $12.6 billion had left bond funds, the most since December 2018.
The data also showed risk-averse investors withdrew $5.3 billion from emerging-market equities, the most in 30 weeks.
Investment-grade, high-yield and emerging- equity saw the biggest drawdown since the 2013 ‘taper tantrum’ — the U.S. Federal Reserve’s first hint it would reduce a stimulus program installed during the financial crisis.
Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank said it is “much too early” to declare the stock market sell-off is over. It expects a 15% to 20% drop in the S&P 500 from its latest peak.
The benchmark U.S. equities index has so far fallen 10.7% to 3023.94 points from the record highs it touched on February 19. Deutsche Bank sees the index hitting a bottom “some time” in the second quarter and recovering from there to 3,250 points by the end of the year.
(Reporting by Thyagaraju Adinarayan; editing by Larry King)