Assets of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) rose in June by $4.27 billion, or 1.8%, according to data released yesterday by the Washington-based Investment Company Institute.

Total assets in the funds--which have continued for some time now to enjoy greater popularity because, unlike a mutual fund, they can be rapidly bought and sold like a stock--now stand at $242.66 billion. Equity index ETF assets, in particular, rose by $3.80 billion to $230.24 billion in the month. Bond index ETF assets were up by $464 million to $12.42 billion. Assets of domestic equity ETFs surged by $1.39 billion, and international equity counterparts were up by $2.41 billion, the ICI said.

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