Trading activity among 401(k) investors was noticeably quieter in the second quarter of 2018 than it was in the first quarter, according to the Alight Solutions 401(k) IndexTM. The second quarter had six days of above-normal1 trading activity —down from 23 days in the first quarter.
Second quarter observations:
- Even though there were fewer days of above-normal activity, the net transfers for the second quarter were slightly higher than the first quarter. In total, 0.46% of balances were transferred in the second quarter, compared to 0.43% of balances in the first quarter
- More than half (38 out of 64) of trading days in the second quarter had net trading dollars moving from equities to fixed income. The first quarter, by contrast, had more than half (32 out of 61) of trading days move from fixed income to equities
Alight Solutions 401(k) Index™ statistics for Q2 2018 and year-to-date:
|Q2 2018||2018 YTD|
|Total transfers as percentage of starting balance||0.46%||0.68%|
|# Fixed days||38(59%)||67(54%)|
|# Equity days||26(41%)||58(46%)|
|# Above-normal days||6||29|
Asset classes with most trading inflows in Q2 2018
|Percentage of inflows||Index dollar value
|Stable value funds||28%||$259|
|Small U.S. equity funds||25%||$235|
Asset classes with most trading outflows in Q2 2018
|Percentage of outflows||Index dollar value
|Target date funds2||36%||$331|
|Large U.S. equity funds||17%||$161|
|Emerging markets funds||16%||$147|
After a volatile first quarter, the domestic equity markets experienced a rebound with large U.S. equities (represented by the S&P 500 Index) up over 3%, and small U.S. equities (represented by the Russell 2000 Index) up just under 8%. Despite the positive performance in the domestic equities, international equities (represented by the MSCI All Country World ex-U.S. Index) continued to fall, losing nearly 3% in the second quarter, and U.S. bonds (represented by the Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Aggregate Index) fell -0.2%.
Returns for common indices
|Q1 2018||2018 YTD|
|Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Aggregate Index||-0.2%||-1.6%|
|S&P 500 Index||3.4%||2.7%|
|Russell 2000 Index||7.8%||7.7%|
|MSCI All Country World ex-U.S. Index (net)||-2.6%||-3.8%|
Members of the media: please contact MacKenzie Lucas for questions about the Alight Solutions 401(k) Index™.
Learn more about the Alight Solutions 401(k) Index here.
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