After one week of inflows, tax-exempt money market funds returned to negative territory, losing $7.3 billion for the week ending March 16 with $485.76 billion, according to the Money Fund Report, a service of iMoneyNet.com.

The previous week, ending March 9, tax-free money funds hit $485.77 billion after gaining $3.65 billion, marking only the third time that the funds have generated inflows since January.

The 508 tax-free money funds in the report saw the average seven-day simple yield drop just one basis point to 0.33% in the March 16 week versus the week before, when it ended at 0.34% — all while the Federal Reserve’s target rate remains between zero and 0.25%. The average maturity remained unchanged at 26 days, according to the report.

In the taxable market, the assets of 1,215 funds declined by $45.23 billion and finished with $3.304 trillion. That was just shy of last week’s record high of $3.350 trillion after the funds gained $7.06 billion for the week ending March 10.

The seven-day simple yield for all taxable money funds continued to set all-time lows, sliding to 0.25% after dipping to 0.28% in the prior week.

Overall, the assets of the 1,723 funds in the report suffered $45.24 billion in outflows and settled at $3.79 trillion in total assets for the week ending March 17, after $10.71 billion of inflows pushed total assets of $3.83 trillion for the week ending March 10.

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