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Runs on money market mutual funds

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  • Wermers, Russ
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    Abstract

    This paper studies daily investor flows to and from each money market mutual fund during the period prior to and including the money fund crisis of September and October 2008. We focus on the determinants of flows in the prime money fund category to shed light on the covariates of money fund runs, since this category was, by far, the most heavily impacted by the money fund crisis. We find that institutional investors moved their money simultaneously (or with a one-day delay) into or out of prime money funds, especially within the same fund complex. Specifically, during September and October 2008, flows in a given prime institutional fund are strongly correlated with same-day flows in all other same-complex prime institutional funds, indicating that the money fund crisis was especially focused on certain types of fund complexes. To illustrate, a daily outflow of 1% of total assets from other same-complex prime institutional money funds predicts, on average, a 0.92% outflow in a given prime institutional money fund during the same day; by contrast, prime fund flows are not correlated with same-day, different complex prime fund flows. We also find that investors are sensitive to the liquidity of money fund holdings: correlated flow patterns are less likely to occur in money funds with greater levels of securities with very short maturity (seven days or less). Our analysis also suggests that prime retail money funds also exhibited persistent outflows, and that (similar to institutional shareclasses) retail runs were focused on certain complexes, as well as on funds holding lower levels of short-maturity securities. --

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University of Cologne, Centre for Financial Research (CFR) in its series CFR Working Papers with number 12-05.

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    Date of creation: 2012
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    Handle: RePEc:zbw:cfrwps:1205

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    1. Jank, Stephan & Wedow, Michael, 2010. "Sturm und Drang in money market funds: When money market funds cease to be narrow," CFR Working Papers 10-16, University of Cologne, Centre for Financial Research (CFR).
    2. Rakowski, David & Wang, Xiaoxin, 2009. "The dynamics of short-term mutual fund flows and returns: A time-series and cross-sectional investigation," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(11), pages 2102-2109, November.
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