On Friday, our benchmark Crane 100 Money Fund Index, the average 7-day (simple, annualized) yield of the 100 largest taxable money market mutual funds, fell below 1.0% for the first time since its launch in May 2006. Though overall money fund yields were undoubtedly lower during the 2003-2004 period -- our annual returns for the Crane 100 show a 0.89% rate for 2003 -- rates likely will continue to inch lower in coming weeks.

While yields on Treasury money market funds are inching higher, relieving some pressure on the portion waiving some of their fees, the Prime funds that dominate the Crane 100 continue to see yields ease lower. Our Money Fund Intelligence Daily shows Treasury Institutional funds yielding 0.19%, up 0.03% over the week, while Treasury Individual funds yield a mere 0.05% on average. (Posted money fund yields are always "net" of expenses, though Crane Data does track gross yields and expenses too.)

Government Institutional funds, a handful of which have temporarily closed or restricted new investments, yield 0.59% on average vs. 0.39% for Government Individual funds. Prime Institutional money funds yield 1.15% vs. a yield of 0.91% for Prime Individual money market funds. (Yields are net, simple, annualized as of Tuesday, Jan. 20.)

Crane Data's weekly Brokerage Sweep Intelligence, which tracks FDIC-insured default sweep vehicles, money funds and CDs, shows brokerage customers earning a mere 0.19% for balances under $100K, 0.24% for balances under $500K, 0.32% for balances under $5M, and 0.54% for balances over $5 million. (Rates and yields are as of Friday, Jan. 16.)

For a copy of our Crane Index or our Brokerage Sweep Intelligence, e-mail info@cranedata.us. Bloomberg users may also see a listing of Crane Indexes by typing in 'ALLX CRNI' on their terminals.

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