The Investment Company Institute released its monthly "Trends in Mutual Fund Investing" report late Wednesday. Their latest official numbers show a dip in money fund assets in October, following big increases in September and August. (Month-to-date in November, through 11/28, assets are up big again, increasing by $41.2 billion, according to Crane's Money Fund Intelligence Daily. We show Prime assets up $10.0 billion and Govt MMFs up $30.4 billion this month.) We review ICI's Trends and latest Portfolio Composition statistics, below.

ICI's "Trends in Mutual Fund Investing - October 2017" shows a $28.8 billion increase in money market fund assets in September to $2.748 trillion. This follows a $28.8 billion increase in Sept., a $71.8 billion increase in August, and a $13.6 billion increase in July. In the 12 months through October 31, money fund assets have increased by $73.9 billion, or 2.8%.

The monthly report states, "The combined assets of the nation's mutual funds increased by $218.63 billion, or 1.2 percent, to $18.31 trillion in October, according to the Investment Company Institute’s official survey of the mutual fund industry. In the survey, mutual fund companies report actual assets, sales, and redemptions to ICI."

It explains, "Bond funds had an inflow of $29.84 billion in October, compared with an inflow of $25.16 billion in September.... Money market funds had an outflow of $9.52 billion in October, compared with an inflow of $28.22 billion in September. In October funds offered primarily to institutions had an outflow of $9.23 billion and funds offered primarily to individuals had an outflow of $292 million."

The latest "Trends" shows that Taxable MMFs lost assets last month, while Tax Exempt MMFs gained. Taxable MMFs decreased by $9.4 billion in October, after increasing $30.1 billion in September, $73.5 billion in August and $11.9 billion in July (but decreasing $20.3 billion in June). Tax-Exempt MMFs increased $0.9 billion in October, after decreasing $1.3 billion in September and $1.7 billion in August. They increased $1.7 billion July, but decreased $0.6 billion in June. Over the past year through 10/31/17, Taxable MMF assets increased by $74.0 billion (2.0%) while Tax-Exempt funds were perfectly flat over the past year (0.0%).

Money funds now represent 17.6% (down from 17.9% the previous month) of all mutual fund assets, while bond funds represent 25.8%, according to ICI. The total number of money market funds decreased by 11 to 394 in October, down from 423 a year ago. (Taxable money funds fell by one to 311 and Tax-exempt money funds fell by 10 to 83 over the last month.)

ICI also released its latest "Month-End Portfolio Holdings of Taxable Money Funds," which confirmed another jump in Treasuries in October. Repo remained the largest portfolio segment; it was flat (up $642 million, or 0.1%) at $910.2 billion or 34.9% of holdings. Repo has increased by $117.6 billion over the past 12 months, or 14.8%. (See our Nov. 13 News, "Nov. Money Fund Portfolio Holdings: Treasuries Jump Again, CDs Higher.")

Treasury Bills & Securities moved in second place among composition segments; they rose by $59.7 billion, or 9.2%, to $710.2 billion, or 27.2% of holdings. Treasury holdings have fallen by $54.1 billion, or -7.1%, over the past year. U.S. Government Agency Securities fell to third place; they fell by $3.9 billion, or -0.6%, to $662.4 billion, or 25.4% of holdings. Agency holdings have fallen by $2.2 billion, or -0.3%, over the past 12 months.

Certificates of Deposit (CDs) stood in fourth place; they increased $11.4 billion, or 5.6%, to $214.9 billion (8.2% of assets). CDs held by money funds have risen by $62.3 billion, or 40.9%, over 12 months. Commercial Paper remained in fifth place, increasing $6.3B, or 4.7%, to $139.6 billion (5.3% of assets). CP has increased by $31.6 billion, or 29.3%, over one year. Notes (including Corporate and Bank) were down by $57 million, or -0.7%, to $8.2 billion (0.3% of assets), and Other holdings decreased to $11.5 billion.

The Number of Accounts Outstanding in ICI's series for taxable money funds increased by 68.2 thousand to 26.706 million, while the Number of Funds declined by one to 311. Over the past 12 months, the number of accounts rose by 1.821 million and the number of funds decreased by 10. The Average Maturity of Portfolios was 30 days in October, down two days from September. Over the past 12 months, WAMs of Taxable money funds have shortened by 10 days.

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