Bridgehouse introduces Morningstar Managed Investments Program

Mutual fund sales for RRSP season this year almost doubled last year’s total, according to updated data from the Investment Funds Institute of Canada (IFIC).

IFIC reports that overall net sales for February were $9.2 billion, pushing net sales for the first two months of the year, which represents the bulk of RRSP season, to $13.2 billion. In comparison net sales were just shy of $6.5 billion through the first two months of 2016.

Long-term fund net sales were $9.25 billion in February 2017, and $13.6 billion in the year-to-date, IFIC says, whereas money market funds remain in net redemptions. Last month, net redemptions for money markets totalled $103.4 million, down from $301.5 million in January.

By asset class, balanced funds are still providing the bulk of the net sales, with $5.2 billion worth in February and $7.6 billion so far this year. However, equity funds are showing more signs of life lately.

Read: Upbeat clients

In February, equity funds had net sales of $2.2 billion, up from $1.1 billion in January. Total net sales of $3.3 billion for equity funds so far this year compares positively with $600 million in net redemptions for the same period last year.

Bond fund sales were also in positive territory last month. The category recorded $1.35 billion in net sales in February, pushing total sales so far this year to $2.2 billion, which is up from $850 million in the first two months of 2016.

IFIC also reports that total mutual fund assets under management (AUM) for February were $1,376 billion, compared to $1,341 billion in January, an increase of $35 billion, or 2.6%. Since February 2016, total AUM have increased by $179.9 billion, or 15%.

Monthly sales data are compiled from IFIC and other sources. Toronto-based Strategic Insight provides aggregate totals.

Photo copyright: vinnstock/123RF