Investors' confidence softened somewhat in the second quarter of 2012, according to the John Hancock Investor Sentiment Index.

Specifically, investors’ attitudes toward balanced mutual funds were similar to the prior quarter, with 52% now saying that it is a good time to be investing in balanced mutual funds versus 54% in the first quarter. Their mixed on bonds were also unchanged, with 27% saying it was a good time to invest in bonds (28% in prior quarter) while 25% think it is a bad time (26% said it was a bad time in the first quarter).

Overall, investor sentiment declined by just two points to +19 in the second quarter compared with a score of +21 in the first quarter of this year. The shift was attributed to a drop in positive attitudes toward investing in equities. Fewer than half of investors surveyed are bullish on stocks (48% compared to 56% who were bullish in Q1 2012).

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