U.S. venture capitalists raised $8.1 billion in the third quarter, down 6 percent from the year-ago period, according to a report by the National Venture Capital Association and Thomson Reuters.

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U.S. venture capitalists raised $8.1 billion in the third quarter, down 6 percent from the year-ago period, according to a report released today by the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) and Thomson Reuters.

The number of funds able to raise money amid a rocky economy dropped a sharper 29 percent, to 55, most of which were established by recognized venture capital firms. That trend “is likely to be pervasive in the coming year,” said NVCA President Mark Heesen.

Firms with a record of success will be able to raise larger funds to invest in biotechnology or clean technology projects, despite the current economic crisis, Heesen said.