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Sales surge 43% as equity funds hit highest inflows in 13 years

Retail fund sales surged by 43 per cent last year, with equ-ity funds enjoying the highest level of net retail sales for 13 years.

Figures from the Investment Management Assocation, published last week, show net retail fund inflows stood at £20.4bn for 2013, up from £14.3bn in 2012. Within this, equity funds achieved the highest net retail sales for 13 years as they attracted £11.4bn.Total funds under management swelled to a record £770bn, up 16 per cent from £662bn in 2012.

IMA Mixed Investment 20-60% Shares was the most popular sector with £3.1bn in net retail sales. Second most popular was Targeted Absolute Return, which enjoyed £2.2bn in net retail sales. UK Equity Income and Global Equity Income both saw net retail sales of £1.8bn, while the Property sector had £1.5bn net retail inflows.

In contrast, the worst-selling IMA sector was £ Corporate Bond with an overall outflow of £1.7bn – the lowest net retail sales for the sector since its launch in 2008.

Montfort International financial adviser Matthew Denne says: “I am totally positive on markets but there is still definitely a case for diversification.

“I would approach these numbers with caution as we have learnt in recent times that allocating assets to what were the best-performing asset classes historically does not mean this will necessarily continue.”

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