Mutual funds registered for sale in Thailand posted an average return of 3.25% in October, improving on SeptemberÆs average gain of 2.2%, according to data from Lipper.

Equity funds were once again the best performers last month, posting an average return of 8.37%. Commodities funds also performed strongly, posting an average return of 7.09%.

Sector-wise, portfolios that invest in banks and financials posted an average return of 10.17%, outperforming the benchmark Financial sector Stock Exchange of Thailand index. Funds that invest in China and Thailand equities were also among the top performers.

All of the 10 highest returning equity funds in October are funds managed by SCB Asset Management Company. The three highest funds were SCB MAI Stock Long Term Equity Fund with a gain of 13.80%, SCB Munkhong Open End Fund with a gain of 13.28%, and SCB Taweesub 3 Open End Fund with a gain of 13.26%.

Suthee Luangaramkul, a Bangkok-based analyst at Lipper, expects stock markets to remain volatile in the short-run due to negative external factors such as the subprime loss write-offs in the US, the weak US dollar, and the higher likelihood of a US economic slowdown.

Average October performance of fund groups registered for sale in Thailand, by asset types:

Equities +8.37%
Commodities +7.09
Mixed Assets +5.69%
Protected +0.48%
Money Market +0.27%
Bonds +0.20%

Top 5 fund sectors in terms of performance in October, with their average gain:

Equity Sector Banks and Financials +10.17%
Equity China +9.52%
Equity Thailand +9.21%
Equity Greater China +7.97%
Equity Emerging Markets Global +7.86%

Bottom 5 fund sectors in terms of performance in October, with their average loss/gain:

Equity Global ex-US -1.57%
Equity Japan -1.46%
Equity Sector Pharmaceutical and Health -0.54%
Equity Sector Cyclical Consumer Goods -0.54%
Bond THB +0.19%

Top 5 equity funds in October, with gain:

SCB MAI Stock long-Term Equity +13.8%
SCB Munkhong Open End +13.28%
SCB Taweesub 3 Open End +13.26%
SCB Taweesub 2 Open End +13.20%
SCB Munkhong Open End +13.19%

Bottom equity 5 funds in October, with loss/gain:

Thananchart Value ex-US -1.57%
Asset Plus Nippon Growth -1.46%
Thananchart Premium Brands -0.54%
1 A.M. Smart Long-Term Equity -0.15%
Tisco Global Equity +0.65%