UK investors put the most money into Absolute Return funds for over four years in January, as retail investors re-evaluated their equity exposure.
The latest figures from the Investment Management Association (IMA) revealed the Targeted Absolute Return sector was the best-seller in January, raking in £343m of net retail sales.
The figure was the sector's highest since December 2009 and near double its monthly average over the previous 12 months of £184m.
It is not only retail investors favouring Absolute Return mandates. Following the sharp climb in valuations seen in 2013, IFAonline sister title Investment Week revealed earlier this week a number of the UK's leading multi-managers and asset allocators were also shifting in to the sector.
However, investors by no means piled out of equities. UK Smaller Companies and UK All Companies saw solid net sales of £241m and £213m respectively, ranking them second and fourth, while European equity funds also took £200m to take the fifth spot.
Property was also popular with the IMA Property sector seeing net retail sales of £232m.
Overall net retail sales in January remained strong, topping £1bn for the tenth consecutive month at £1.1bn. It was double last January's £537m total.
Daniel Godfrey, IMA chief executive, said: "Net retail sales were twice the level of January last year. Investors continued to favour equities, especially UK and European funds, while Targeted Absolute Return funds saw their highest sales since December 2009."
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