Sales of hybrid mutual funds are recovering from the stock market's third-quarter jitters, according to figures from the Investment Company Institute.

Net sales of hybrid funds - which include various combinations of stocks, bonds, and money market instruments-were $687.8 million in January, the mutual fund trade group reported. That is a fraction of the net $2.6 billion invested in hybrid funds in January 1998 but is up from the $130 million that flowed out from such funds in December.

Equity funds, by comparison, pulled in $15.7 billion in January, up from $14.1 billion a year earlier.

Stock market jitters pushed both equity and hybrid fund sales into negative territory in August, but pure stock funds recovered faster.

Investors took $948.5 million more money out of hybrid funds than they put into them in August. Hybrid funds had negative flows in September, October, and December.

Equity funds lost $11.8 billion in August, but have posted positive net sales every month since.

Net cash flow into all long-term funds was $24.8 billion in January; the fund industry ended January with $5.719 trillion, according to the Investment Company Institute.

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