The Investment Company Institute released its latest "Money Market Fund Assets" and its monthly "Trends in Mutual Fund Investing" reports yesterday. Their numbers show jump in money fund assets in the latest week and in November, following a dip in October and big increases in September and August. Money market mutual fund assets, which broke above $2.8 trillion 3 weeks ago reached their highest level since early 2010. Year-to-date, MMF assets have increased by $113 billion, or 4.1%. For 2017, money fund assets are showing their biggest annual increase since 2009. Prime MMFs have increased by $69.1 billion, or 17.8%, year-to-date. We review ICI's Trends and latest Portfolio Composition statistics, below.

ICI writes, "Total money market fund assets increased by $22.31 billion to $2.84 trillion for the week ended Wednesday, December 27, the Investment Company Institute reported today. Among taxable money market funds, government funds increased by $20.83 billion and prime funds increased by $1.40 billion. Tax-exempt money market funds increased by $86 million." Total Government MMF assets, which include Treasury funds too, stand at $2.254 trillion (79.3% of all money funds), while Total Prime MMFs stand at $456.9 billion (16.1%). Tax Exempt MMFs total $131.2 billion, or 4.6%.

They explain, "Assets of retail money market funds increased by $378 million to $1.01 trillion. Among retail funds, government money market fund assets increased by $190 million to $612.00 billion, prime money market fund assets decreased by $193 million to $268.76 billion, and tax-exempt fund assets increased by $381 million to $125.64 billion." Retail assets account for over a third of total assets, or 35.4%, and Government Retail assets make up 60.8% of all Retail MMFs.

ICI's release adds, "Assets of institutional money market funds increased by $21.93 billion to $1.84 trillion. Among institutional funds, government money market fund assets increased by $20.64 billion to $1.64 trillion, prime money market fund assets increased by $1.59 billion to $188.18 billion, and tax-exempt fund assets decreased by $295 million to $5.59 billion." Institutional assets account for 64.6% of all MMF assets, with Government Inst assets making up 89.4% of all Institutional MMFs.

ICI's "Trends in Mutual Fund Investing - November 2017" shows a $57.9 billion increase in money market fund assets in November to $2.797 trillion. This follows a $8.8 billion decrease in October, 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 November 30, money fund assets have increased by $74.9 billion, or 2.8%.

The monthly report states, "The combined assets of the nation's mutual funds increased by $284.46 billion, or 1.6 percent, to $18.60 trillion in November, 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 $14.99 billion in November, compared with an inflow of $29.83 billion in October.... Money market funds had an inflow of $57.01 billion in November, compared with an outflow of $9.52 billion in October. In November funds offered primarily to institutions had an inflow of $50.54 billion and funds offered primarily to individuals had an inflow of $6.48 billion."

The latest "Trends" shows that both Taxable and Tax Exempt MMFs gained assets last month. Taxable MMFs increased by $57.4 billion in November, after decreasing $9.4 billion in October, increasing $30.1 billion in September, $73.5 billion in August and $11.9 billion in July. Tax-Exempt MMFs increased $0.5 billion in November, after increasing $0.9 billion in October, but decreasing $1.3 billion in September and $1.7 billion in August. Over the past year through 11/30/17, Taxable MMF assets increased by $76.3 billion (2.9%) while Tax-Exempt funds fell by $1.4 billion over the past year (-1.1%).

Money funds now represent 15.0% (the same as 15.0% the previous month) of all mutual fund assets, while bond funds represent 21.7%, according to ICI. The total number of money market funds decreased by 3 to 391 in November, down from 423 a year ago. (Taxable money funds fell by 3 to 308 and Tax-exempt money funds were unchanged over the last month.)

ICI also released its latest "Month-End Portfolio Holdings of Taxable Money Funds," which confirmed a dip in Treasuries and Repo in November. Repo remained the largest portfolio segment; it was down $5.2 billion, or -0.6%, to $905.0 billion or 33.7% of holdings. Repo has increased by $132.9 billion over the past 12 months, or 17.2%. (See our Dec. 12 News, "Dec. Money Fund Portfolio Holdings: Fed Repo Down Again; CP, CDs Up.")

Treasury Bills & Securities moved in second place among composition segments; they fell by $8.1 billion, or -1.1%, to $702.1 billion, or 26.1% of holdings. Treasury holdings have fallen by $145.2 billion, or -17.1%, over the past year. U.S. Government Agency Securities remained in third place; they rose by $14.6 billion, or 2.2%, to $677.0 billion, or 25.2% of holdings. Agency holdings have fallen by $7.8 billion, or -1.1%, over the past 12 months.

Certificates of Deposit (CDs) stood in fourth place; they increased $3.2 billion, or 1.5%, to $218.1 billion (8.1% of assets). CDs held by money funds have risen by $64.1 billion, or 41.6%, over 12 months. Commercial Paper remained in fifth place, increasing $6.8B, or 4.9%, to $146.4 billion (5.4% of assets). CP has increased by $37.0 billion, or 33.8%, over one year. Notes (including Corporate and Bank) were down by $410 million, or -5.0%, to $7.8 billion (0.3% of assets), and Other holdings decreased to $10.7 billion.

The Number of Accounts Outstanding in ICI's series for taxable money funds decreased by 127.6 thousand to 26.579 million, while the Number of Funds declined by 3 to 308. Over the past 12 months, the number of accounts rose by 1.301 million and the number of funds decreased by 13. The Average Maturity of Portfolios was 30 days in November, unchanged from October. Over the past 12 months, WAMs of Taxable money funds have shortened by 13 days.

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