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Mutual Funds : Equity MFs Pull Out More than Rs8,000 Crore in March
Equity mutual funds saw huge outflows—of more than Rs8,000 crore—in March 2016. Mutual funds have been net buyers in the past; they reported a net outflow for the first time in 23 months. Despite this significant outflow in the last month of the fiscal, in FY15-16, equity mutual funds reported net inflows of more than Rs68,000 crore. In FY14-15, they registered a net inflow of a little more than Rs40,000 crore. Experts reckon that the fund outflows in March could be due to profit-booking and the fact that many banks and corporates would have pulled out their investments in view of the financial year-end.
  
The behaviour of foreign institutional investors (FIIs) was quite different. FIIs were net buyers in March; they invested more than Rs21,000 crore in the month. They had been net sellers since the past nine months. March has been a superb month for Indian equity investors; the benchmark index delivered more than 10% returns during the month. 

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Mutual Funds : Bank Bazaar Also Ventures into Online Distribution of Mutual Funds
Bankbazaar.com has announced its plans to expand its portfolio into investment category, starting with mutual funds in the first quarter of  FY16-17. Well-funded Bankbazaar.com will provide retail investors customised suggestions on mutual fund schemes through its online platform. It also plans to offer mutual fund schemes from select asset management companies (AMCs). 
 
However, the online distribution platform is already crowded. Websites like fundsindia.com, scripbox.com and others are selling mutual funds online, apart from brokers. Bankbazaar’s entry would make this space overcrowded. Bankbazaar claims to be taking on the role of ‘Robo-advisors’, and will use a ‘proprietary research methodology’ to provide ‘research-based’ suggestions. However, it is not clear if Bankbazaar is an adviser or a distributor. 
 

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