New Delhi: Volatility in stock market forced investors across the world to pull out USD 24.5 billion from emerging market equity funds in the January-March quarter of 2011, including over USD 2 billion from funds focused on BRIC markets.

"The BRIC -- Brazil, Russia, India and China – markets and funds have not fared so well, with investors tending to focus on their efforts to control rising prices rather than the growth that is helping fuel that inflation," according to data compiled by international fund tracking firm EPFR Global.

The equity funds saw an outflow of USD 10.31 billion in Asia (excluding Japan) in the first quarter of the 2011, with USD 2.35 billion taken out from BRIC countries.

For the quarter, the group of equity funds saw outflows of USD 24.5 billion, their roughest quarter since investors pulled out USD 25.6 billion during the third quarter of 2008.

However, emerging market equity funds registered their highest weekly inflow of USD 2.6 billion during the week ended March 30 since the first week of January, the report noted.

The inflows into emerging markets totalled USD 2.6 billion in the seven-day period ending March 30, following outflows in eight of the previous nine weeks.

Investors have also pumped more money into funds focused on developed economies on hopes those markets will improve.

For the quarter, developed market equity funds registered inflows of USD 56.97 billion, their best start to a year since they absorbed USD 63.3 billion during the first quarter of