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Investors add $34.1 billion to equity mutual funds in last four weeks

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, November 15, 2013. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

(Reuters) - Investors poured some $34.1 billion into all equity mutual funds and exchange-traded funds in the past four weeks that ended November 13, the biggest four-week total since January, according to data from TrimTabs Investment Research.

TrimTabs research published on Sunday showed that retail investors have been piling into stocks at the fastest rate since January, when $38 billion flowed into equities.

"The record highs on many major U.S. stock market averages are luring mom and pop back into the market," said David Santschi, chief executive officer at TrimTabs Investment Research in a note.

The S&P 500 (.SPX) index is up 26 percent year-to-date.

"The intermediate-term demand outlook remains very favorable for U.S. equities," Santschi said.

Investors are putting their money in U.S. equities mutual funds more than global ones. About $19.8 billion flowed into U.S. equity mutual funds, compared to $14.3 billion into global equity mutual funds in the last four weeks.

The average U.S. equity fund has outperformed the average global equity fund since the start of October, rising 5.2 percent compared to 2.4 percent.

As investors flock to the stock market, retail investors continue to flee bonds, research showed. Bond mutual funds have posted outflows in all but two weeks since the start of June. There were redemptions of $13.4 billion in the four weeks ended November 13, TrimTabs said.

In terms of the broader economy, unemployment claims data has improved but income growth in the United States "remains lackluster despite the massive fiscal and monetary stimulus being pumped in," TrimTabs noted.

(Reporting by Liana B. Baker; Editing by Leslie Gevirtz)