(Bloomberg) -- GAM Holding AG said net outflows in investment management were 3.1 billion francs ($3.2 billion) in the first quarter as market turbulence prompted investors to avoid risk.

Assets under management in the unit fell 7 percent to 67.3 billion francs at the end of March from Dec. 31, the Zurich-based company said in a statement Wednesday. Group assets under management fell 4 percent to 114.7 billion francs. The company expects performance fees to fall in the first half from a year earlier as market instability continues.

"The start to 2016 in financial markets has been highly turbulent, leading to risk aversion among investors and affecting industry-wide flows,” Chief Executive Officer Alexander Friedman said in the statement. “This created a challenging backdrop for a number of our investment strategies.”

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