Inflow into equity mutual fund schemes more than doubled to ₹25,077 crore in December compared to ₹11,615 crore in November as investors used the sharp fall in market to pump money into new fund offers (NFOs).

All the equity schemes saw a steady inflow, with multi-cap funds topping with ₹10,516 crore followed by thematic and flexi cap which attracted ₹3,770 crore and ₹2,409 crore, respectively. Three NFOs each in multi-cap and flexi-cap mopped up ₹9,509 crore and ₹2,937 crore.

Aashish P Somaiyaa, Chief Executive Officer, WhiteOak Capital Asset Management, said this is probably the highest-ever inflow into equity funds. Taking equity, balanced, hybrid, index funds and ETFs together, the gross inflow was well over ₹70,000 crore and net inflow just short of ₹50,000 crore.

Opportune time to invest

“If one were to extrapolate this, the inflows would be so high that the industry may see 30 per cent of the total equity AUM coming in a single year itself. This is a staggering number by any account. It is encouraging to see investors increasing their participation at this opportune juncture in the markets and economic performance of the country and it augurs well for the industry, for investors and the markets,” Somaiyaa said.

Hybrid funds saw an inflow of ₹9,422 crore with balanced advantage funds attracting ₹6,094 crore and arbitrage advantage funds getting ₹1,045 crore. One NFO in Balanced Advantage got fresh investments of ₹474 crore.

SIP contribution on a high

The contribution through monthly systematic investment plans (SIPs) rose to a record ₹11,305 crore last month against ₹11,005 crore in November. The number of SIP accounts increased to 4.91 crore against 4.78 crore while the SIP AUM surged to ₹5.65-lakh crore (₹5.47-lakh crore).

Investors pumped in ₹18,702 crore in passive funds with NFOs alone attracting ₹6,671 crore and ₹ 6,409 crore coming into six ETFs.

Debt funds posted a net outflow of ₹49,154 crore. Overall, the AUM of all mutual funds hit a new record of ₹37.73-lakh crore against ₹ 37.34-lakh crore in November.

NS Venkatesh, Chief Executive, AMFI, said the average AUM of the mutual fund industry increased to ₹37.73-lakh crore against ₹30.96-lakh crore in December 2020, a growth of 26 per cent. SIPs have been the popular medium of consistent investing for the common man. This is evident from the number of accounts rising, he added.

Himanshu Srivastava, Associate Director, Morningstar India, said despite concerns over Omicron and the surge in the number of Covid cases, the growth outlook over the long-term remains strong. Moreover, he said, relatively lower returns from traditional investments have made equity mutual funds an attractive investment option.