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Mutual funds lose US$93b in first quarter
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First-quarter losses by China's mutual funds soared, with 346 funds managed by 58 companies losing 647.5 billion yuan ($92.5 billion), eight times the amount of the previous quarter, according to TX Investment Consulting.

TX based its calculations on the funds' quarterly reports.

Combined assets under management shrank to 2.48 trillion yuan from 3.26 trillion yuan at the end of last year.

Stock-oriented funds lost 466.59 billion yuan in the first quarter, up 860 percent compared with the fourth quarter.

Most funds reduced holdings in financial, steel, transport and warehousing stocks. Some slightly increased their holdings in the petrochemical, real estate, food and beverage sectors.

As of mid-April, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index was 49.5 percent below its record high in October.

Shares were mixed on Monday, despite regulatory measures to stabilize the market, as investor confidence remained weak. The Shanghai index edged up 0.72 percent, while the Shenzhen Component Index lost 1.75 percent.

(Xinhua News Agency April 22, 2008)

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