Rising markets suck money from gold funds

Gold bars 1More than $1 billion (€770 million) of net outflows came out of gold funds in the first week of March, as investors shifted their exposure to rising stock markets.

The declining demand for the precious metal can be seen as a sign of confidence in global markets because gold is typically viewed as a safe place to put money when equities are volatile.

Investors are now allocating large sums to equities, hoping to benefit from a rally that has seen stock indices in markets such as the United States increase 8% so far this year.

Nearly $5 billion of net new money flowed into US equity funds in the first week of March, according to figures from data provider EPFR Global.

This means $33 billion of net new money has gone into US equity funds so far this year, a startling turnaround compared with the same period in 2011, when there was a net outflow of $3 billion from these vehicles.

Sales figures for the world's largest gold exchange-traded fund, the SPDR Gold from State Street Global Advisors, underline the falling demand for the precious metal. In the first two months of the year, this fund alone had nearly $5 billion of net outflows, according to BlackRock.

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