Swiss investors up emerging market risk-Lipper

* Investors put 2 bln Sfr in EM bonds, 1 bln in EM stocks

* Commodities, gold used as inflation, currency hedges

* Use strong franc to buy euro-denominated funds

By Martin de Sa’Pinto

ZURICH, April 14 (BestGrowthStock) – The year-long trend for Swiss
investors to switch money from cash to riskier assets remained
intact in March as investors raised their exposure to the
developing world, piling into emerging markets stocks and bonds.

While the Greek debt crisis raged, putting Europe’s single
currency under pressure, Swiss investors got more for their
francs by buying into euro-denominated funds, data from research
specialist Lipper, a Thomson Reuters company, showed.

“There were astonishingly big inflows into euro-based funds
and a further big shift from money markets into bonds. Investors
took on a lot of risk as seen in the volume of emerging markets
bonds,” said Lipper methodology head Otto Kober.

Emerging markets bonds attracted more than 2 billion Swiss
francs ($1.9 billion) and a further 1 billion went into emerging
markets equities.

However optimism was more tempered in March than a month
earlier, with bond mutual fund sales leapfrogging those of
equities funds after falling behind them in February for the
first time in a year, the Lipper data showed.

Investors put more than 4 billion francs into Swiss mutual
funds during the month, with bond funds raking in 4.7 billion,
more than twice what they put into equities funds.

A strong performance from equities funds increased the
overall value of assets under management by a further 5 billion
francs, pushing them to the highest level in more than two years
as investors sought to take advantage of resilient markets.

Total assets in mutual funds stood at 624 billion francs,
with 195 billion in equities funds and 185 billion in bond funds
— the two largest asset classes. Another 110 billion were in
money market funds, which have shrunk steadily in the last year.

Other asset classes to draw investors were hedge funds and
commodities, which each pulled in near 1 billion francs.

“Commodities, and especially gold, also had a good month.
People are likely using them as a hedge against inflation and
currency depreciation,” said Kober.

After seeing net inflows in February for the first time in
a year, money market funds were the only asset class to decline
in March, with investors pulling out a hefty 3.4 billion francs.

GAM Holding (GAMH.VX: ) unit Swiss and Global attracted almost
2 billion francs in new money, almost three times as much as
Lombard Odier and Credit Suisse (CSGN.VX: ) which had the next
largest inflows.

UBS (UBSN.VX: ) was the biggest loser in March with outflows
of over half a billion francs after two positive months.

Stock Analysis

(Editing by Laura MacInnis and David Holmes)
($1=1.051 Swiss Franc)

Swiss investors up emerging market risk-Lipper