U.S. mutual fund companies experienced a $178.9 billion increase in assets during December 2003, a 2.5% increase from November that brought the total fund industry asset total to $7.413 trillion, according to the Investment Company Institute's "Trends in Mutual Fund Investing" report for December 2003.

Long-term funds felt a net inflow of $15.58 billion in December, down from $15.30 billion in November. For the year, the long-termers, namely stock, bond and hybrid funds, saw inflows of $217.35 billion, up from $121.23 billion a year earlier.

Stock funds stayed almost exactly the same in December, with a $14.74 billion gain, down slightly from $14.93 billion in November. That brought 2003 inflows to $152.77 billion, after a dreadful 2002 that saw $27.75 in outflows.

With the markets experiencing a steady but not dazzling recovery, the positive news did not filter to money market funds, which have suffered outflows because of the miniscule yields. Even though institutional-based money funds felt a $3.11 billion December inflow, the ones offered primarily to individuals suffered a $25.94 outflow.

Subscribe Now

Access to premium content including in-depth coverage of mutual funds, hedge funds, 401(K)s, 529 plans, and more.

3-Week Free Trial

Insight and analysis into the management, marketing, operations and technology of the asset management industry.