Top 5 Zacks #1 Ranked Balanced Funds

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Investors seeking total return, both regular income and long term capital appreciation, should include balanced funds in their portfolio. Balanced funds are perhaps the most flexible and actively managed category of mutual funds as their investments offer exposure across a variety of asset classes and sectors. Such funds often rebalance their portfolios on the basis of current economic and market trends in order to meet their investment objective. Moreover, these funds not only seek to provide good returns during favorable market conditions, but also provide protection against substantial capital loss during difficult times.

Below we will share with you 5 top rated balanced mutual funds. Each has earned a Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) as we expect the fund to outperform its peers in the future.  To view the Zacks Rank and past performance of all balanced funds, investors can click here to see the complete list of funds.

Wells Fargo Advantage Growth Balanced (NVGBX) invests 65% of its assets and 35% in bonds as per its “neutral” target allocation. At present, the fund’s portfolio consists of the different equity and fixed income of various master portfolios. The balanced mutual fund 12.12% returned in the last one year period.

Jeffrey Mellas is the fund manager and has managed this balanced mutual fund since 2003.

American Century Balanced (TWBIX) seeks both capital growth and current income. Around 60% of the fund’s assets are utilized to purchase equity securities and the balance is used to acquire fixed income instruments. The balanced mutual fund returned 13.79% in the last one year period.

The balanced mutual fund has a minimum initial investment of $2,500 and an expense ratio of 0.90% compared to a category average of 0.99% %.

Eaton Vance Balanced A (EVIFX) invests in both fixed-income securities and common stocks through two other registered investment companies managed by Eaton Vance Management or its affiliates. The balanced mutual fund returned 11.59% in the last one year period.

Thomas Luster is the fund manager and has managed this balanced mutual fund since 2010.

Buffalo Flexible Income (BUFBX) seeks current income with a secondary objective of capital appreciation. The fund invests in equity as well as debt securities. The dollar weighted average maturity period of the fund is not expected to exceed 15 years. The balanced mutual fund returned 14.17% in the last one year period.

As of June 2012, this balanced mutual fund held 131 issues, with 2.23% of its total assets invested in Lions Gate Entmt 10.25%.

Ivy Balanced A (IBNAX) invests in a diversified portfolio of equity, debt and short term instruments, the composition of which depends on current market conditions. The fund focuses on investing in large and mid-cap companies which pay regular dividends. A minimum of 25% of its assets is utilized to purchase fixed-income securities. The balanced mutual fund returned 13.22% in the last one year period.

The balanced mutual fund has a minimum initial investment of $500 and an expense ratio of 1.23% compared to a category average of 0.97%

To view the Zacks Rank and past performance of all balanced mutual funds, investors can click here to see the complete list of funds. .

About Zacks Mutual Fund Rank

By applying the Zacks Rank to mutual funds, investors can find funds that not only outpaced the market in the past but are also expected to outperform going forward. Learn more about the Zacks Mutual Fund Rank at http://www.zacks.com/funds.

Read the analyst report on NVGBX

Read the analyst report on TWBIX

Read the analyst report on EVIFX

Read the analyst report on BUFBX

Read the analyst report on IBNAX



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