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By Sam Forgione
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Investors pulled $23.3 billion out of global bond funds in the latest week, the biggest outflow since 1992, as fears persisted that the Federal Reserve might reduce its bond-buying, data from EPFR Global and Bank of America Merrill Lynch showed on Friday.
Funds that invest in high-yield junk bond funds suffered outflows of $6.8 billion in the week ended on Wednesday. Other outflows included $4.9 billion from investment-grade corporate bond funds, $5.6 billion from emerging market bond funds, $4.5 billion from U.S. municipal bond funds, and $1.3 billion from mortgage-backed securities funds.
U.S. bond funds were hit hard, with outflows of $10.6 billion. The yield on the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note rose 19 basis points to 2.54 percent over the week, sending bond prices lower.
Precious metal funds had their 20th straight week of outflows, at $2.8 billion. The price of spot gold fell 9.3 percent over the week to its lowest in nearly three years, also on fears that the Fed would rein in its monetary policy.
Global stock funds suffered $13.1 billion in outflows, reversing inflows of $4.8 billion during the prior week. The Standard & Poor's 500 stock index <.SPX> fell 1.6 percent over the reporting period.
(Reporting by Sam Forgione; Editing by James Dalgleish and Lisa Von Ahn)