SEOUL, Jan. 5 (Korea Bizwire) – South Korean investors have pulled about 40 trillion won (US$37.7 billion) out of money market funds (MMFs) over the past seven months as they sought higher returns in stock and property markets, data showed Friday.
Outstanding MMFs totaled 99.3 trillion won as of Tuesday, compared with 138.8 trillion won as of May 17 last year, according to the Korean Financial Investment Association.
It was the first time in about two years that the size of local MMFs fell below the 100 trillion-won mark, the data showed.
Money market funds are mutual funds that invest mainly in short-term debt securities, such as Treasury bills and commercial papers. They are widely considered to be as safe as bank deposits.
South Korea’s main stock index jumped about 20 percent last year, buoyed by healthier earnings from big technology companies.
Despite lingering tensions over North Korea’s provocative behaviors, the Korea Composite Stock Price Index reported its largest annual gain in seven years last year.