Top 5 Zacks #1 Ranked Balanced Funds

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Investors looking at both long term capital growth and regular income would do well to consider balanced funds. Balanced funds ensure that gains from rising markets are accompanied by relatively lower levels of risk since they can utilize the strengths of equity as well as fixed income securities. The composition of their portfolios also ensures that the capital invested is protected during a market downturn. Moreover, many funds in this category keep the relative shares of equity, debt and money market instruments fluid to enable them to respond to changing market conditions.

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.

Eaton Vance Balanced A (EVIFX) seeks capital appreciation over the long term and current income. The fund 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 has a three year annualized return of 11.4%.

The balanced mutual fund has a minimum initial investment of $1,000 and an expense ratio of 1.14% compared to a category average of 1.00%.

Calvert Balanced A (CSIFX) allocates 60% of its net assets to stocks and 40% to bonds and related instruments. Equity investments mainly constitute common stock of large-cap companies. The fund also invests in securities issued by institutions such as the FNMA and the FHLMC. The balanced mutual fund has a three year annualized return of 12.26 %.

The Fund Manager is Eugene Profit and he has managed this balanced mutual fund since 2002.

USAA Balanced Strategy (USBSX) seeks both current income and capital appreciation. The fund holds a portfolio consisting of equity securities as well as fixed income and money market securities. It may also derivatives to enhance returns The balanced mutual fund has a three year annualized return of 12.36%.

As of February 2012, this balanced mutual fund held 166 issues, with 22.75% of its total assets invested in iShares MSCI EAFE Index.

State Farm Balanced (STFBX) invests 60% to 75% of its assets in common stocks. At least 25% of its assets are used to purchase fixed income securities. This includes preferred stock and debt securities with longer maturity periods; rated investment grade. The balanced mutual fund has a five year annualized return of 9.3%.

The balanced mutual fund has a minimum initial investment of $250 and an expense ratio of 0.13% compared to a category average of 1.00%.

Buffalo Flexible Income (BUFBX) seeks high current income with a secondary oibjective of capital growth over the long term. The fund invests in a wide spectrum of instruments like common stocks, convertible and non-convertible preferred stocks, convertible and non convertible debt securities, and junk bonds. The balanced mutual fund has a five year annualized return of 15.35%.

The Fund Manager is John C. Kornitzer and he has managed this balanced mutual fund since 2002.

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 EVIFX

Read the analyst report on CSIFX

Read the analyst report on USBSX

Read the analyst report on STFBX

Read the analyst report on BUFBX



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