Stock Funds Attract Record Deposits as Fed Decides to Hold Off

Investors worldwide poured a record amount of money into equity funds over the past week as the Federal Reserve unexpectedly refrained from reducing the $85 billion pace of monthly bond buying.

Stock funds attracted $25.9 billion in the week ended Sept. 18, topping the previous record set in 2007, according to Cambridge, Massachusetts-based EPFR Global, which tracks the flow of money from both institutional and retail investors globally. U.S. equity funds won almost $17 billion of the total, EPFR said in an e-mailed statement.

U.S. stocks, as measured by the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, rose to a record this week after the Fed on Sept. 18 said it needs more evidence of lasting improvement in the economy before reducing its asset purchases. Treasuries and gold also rallied as Bernanke stressed that the pace of bond buying would be dependent on economic data, and the Fed has no predetermined schedule for tapering the purchases that have pushed its balance sheet to $3.66 trillion.

Bond funds suffered net redemptions for the eighth straight week, according to EPFR, while money market funds had “modest inflows,” in the period.