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Mutual funds balloon to $1 trillion, says Investment Funds Institute of Canada

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TORONTO - Canadians are holding more than a trillion dollars in mutual funds for the first time ever, according to the Investment Funds Institute of Canada.

IFIC said Wednesday that assets under management were $1.01 trillion as of Jan. 31, an increase of 16 per cent or $140.1 billion year over year.

Sales of long-term funds totalled $6.25 billion in January, up from $6.286 billion a year earlier.

Last month, net sales of equity funds amounted to $1.59 billion and balanced funds added $4.72 billion. Bond funds saw net redemptions of $567 million, while specialty funds reported net sales of $502.9 million.

IFIC says investors are drawn to mutual funds for a variety of factors including convenience and ease of use. The first mutual fund was offered in Canada in 1932.

"The importance of this milestone is the increase in wealth it represents for the roughly 4.6 million Canadian households that choose to save for their financial goals through mutual funds," IFIC president and CEO Joanne De Laurentiis said in a statement.

"Mutual funds have grown tenfold in value since 1990 and are a cornerstone of Canadians' retirement savings," she said. "Of the $986 billion increase since 1990, approximately 54 per cent was generated by net sales, while 46 per cent is the increase in the total value (market effect) of those savings."

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