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Wall Street has gone gaga for robot stocks

Alastair Grant / AP

Cumulative flows to funds that invest in robotics companies have exploded from less than $200 million in September of last year to $1.12 billion today, as Bank of America strategist Michael Hartnett points out in a research note. This sudden interest has helped propel robotics stocks in 2017, with the Robo Global Robotics and Automation ETF better than doubling the performance of this S&P 500 year-to-date.

Why it matters: The rapid rise of investor interest in these companies means that there will be plenty of capital available to businesses looking to profit from automating the U.S. economy.