The Flow Data Is In: Investors Are Still Buying Energy Stocks

Healthcare and financials have seen heavy selling in recent weeks. Despite a 3.3 percent gain by the S&P 500, Bank of America reports net outflows of $1.7 billion last week.

The client flow data is in for the first full week of October, and a pair of Wall Street firms is looking to recent data to determine market trends.

According to a new report by Credit Suisse analyst Lori Calvasina, healthcare outflows in September reached five-year lows, while funds continued to pile into the energy sector.

In a more recent report, Bank of America analyst Jill Carey reported client appetite for energy stocks has also spilled over into the early October data.

Selling Dominates

While the S&P 500 recorded a 3.3 percent weekly gain last week, its biggest in 10 months, Bank of Americas numbers show that its clients produced net outflows of $1.7 billion for the week. The biggest sellers were institutional investors, who generated net outflows for the sixth consecutive week.

Conversely, Carey added that selling by private clients resulted in the first weekly net outflow in eight weeks.

Related Link: Energy Rebound Sparks Leveraged ETF Action

Sector Analysis

Carey reported that the financial and healthcare sectors produced the heaviest selling last week. Only ETFs and stocks in Consumer Discretionary, Telecom and Energy saw net buying, she added.

Money has now flowed out of financials, industrials and materials for the fifth consecutive week. Energy recorded net inflows for the seventh consecutive week.

In the past two months, the Select Sector Financial Slct Str SPDR Fd (NYSE:XLF) is down 7.7 percent, while the Energy Select Sector SPDR (ETF) (NYSE:XLE) has also fallen 2.2 percent.

Pension Funds Buying Once Again

Finally, Bank of America reported that pension fund clients were back to buying last week after a week of selling.

The graph below shows that pension fund client inflows year-to-date have now reached their highest levels since 2009.

Disclosure: The author holds no position in the stocks mentioned.

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