Investors in September pulled cash from equity mutual funds at the fastest rate in 2012 although ETFs continued to see healthy inflows.

“The amount of net deposits that stock ETFs attracted last month was about double the total that was removed from stock mutual funds, suggesting that investors still saw value in stocks,” the Associated Press reports.

Investors redeemed a net $16.3 billion from U.S. stock funds last month, according to the report.

Meanwhile, ETFs drew in $38 billion in new money during September, marking the strongest month of flows in over three years, according to investment researcher Morningstar. [Investors Tired of Lagging Active Funds Pile Into ETFs]

In mutual funds, investors continue to favor the relative safety of fixed-income portfolios. Bond funds attracted cash for the 13th consecutive month. The shift from stocks to bonds likely reflects lingering investor fear after the dot-com bust and financial crisis, as well as older investors rotating into fixed-income assets.