U.S. stock funds set for most monthly withdrawals on record: Lipper

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., December 20, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Investors renewed their flight from U.S.-based stock funds in the latest week, setting those investments up for their biggest month of withdrawals on record, Lipper data showed on Thursday.

More than $80.7 billion poured out of U.S.-based stock funds during the 14 days through Dec. 19, representing about 1 percent of the total assets in such funds, according to the research service.

The selling continued during a week in which the U.S. Federal Reserve raised rates for the ninth time in about three years and reaffirmed its commitment to tightening monetary policy even as markets prepare for a slowdown in economic growth. U.S. stocks slid again on Thursday, with the Nasdaq Composite on the cusp of confirming it is in bear market territory.

If the withdrawals continue for the eight final trading days of the year, December will mark the biggest cash-out from U.S. equity funds on records that date to 1992, when the fund industry was far smaller.

Reporting by Trevor Hunnicutt; Editing by Leslie Adler and Dan Grebler

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