With a jump of 9.7%, worldwide mutual fund assets totaled $16.06 trillion at the end of 2004 helped by the positive global performance of equity indexes, according to the data released by the Investment Company Institute.

The industry added $165 billion in the fourth quarter, up from $22 billion in the third, finishing the year on a high note. Long maturity funds were the clear winners in terms of money added, compared with modest results in money markets funds.

ICI, which reports to the Federal Reserve on a weekly basis, based its collection for 2004 on statistics from 40 countries.

Boosted by the bullish stock market, mutual funds marked substantial cash-inflows across the entire spectrum of the industry. Worldwide equity funds added 13.7% in the fourth quarter, while bond fund assets and money market funds gained 8.6% and 3.4%, respectively.

Out of 54,986 mutual funds across the globe at the end of 2004, 41% represented equity funds, 24% - bonds, 21% were balanced/mixed funds, and money market funds made up 7%.

By assets, 45% were invested in equity funds, 21% in money market funds, while the shares of bond funds and Balanced/mixed funds represented 20% and 9% respectively.

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