A rush from investors seeking a safe haven helped Japanese equities to top the performance charts in September, according to data from FE Analytics.
The IA Japan sector was the best performer in the month, returning 2.4 per cent, comfortably ahead of the next best performing sector, which was the IA Emerging Market bond.
The Topix Index of Japanese shares was the best performing market, returning 5.5 per cent.
Emerging markets meanwhile, contained both the best and worst performing funds.
The Global Emerging Markets sector lost 1.1 per cent in September, with Indian and Chinese equities dragging the market down.
In contrast, the best performing fund in the whole IA universe was the Neptune Russia, which, buoyed by a higher oil price, returned 6.7 per cent.
The Jupiter India fund was the overall worst performer in the IA sectors, losing 14 per cent, according to FE. India is an emerging market economy that imports oil, and so suffers when the oil price rises.
The FTSE 100 was closer to the top than the bottom of the performance charts, returning 1.19 per cent, ahead of US equities, which returned 0.53 per cent.
Ben Yearsley, a director at Shore Financial Planning, said: "It is very difficult tempting investors into a falling asset class, despite the clear valuation differences in markets today.
"UK domestic stocks and emerging markets remain cheap – for very different reasons – yet investors aren’t interested in either.
"Russia topped the performance charts last month, yet remains probably the cheapest market, for obvious political reasons. Yet the oil price rise will do wonders for the Russian economy.
"China is back to crisis level valuations and markets await some form of stimulus package to offset the slowdown from the consumer. If and when this happens, will investors sit up and start buying again?"
Data released by FE last month showed over the past decade, since the collapse of of Lehman Brothers, funds in the technology sector and those in the Japanese smaller companies sector have been the best performers.