|Expense Ratio (net)||0.55%|
|Last Cap Gain||0.00|
|Morningstar Risk Rating||Above Average|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||0.88|
|5y Average Return||N/A|
|Average for Category||N/A|
|Inception Date||May 11, 1987|
Funds in the intermediate-term bond Morningstar Category are a favorite among investors: According to our latest fund flows report, these funds raked in $15.5 billion in assets last month. Plus, you'll get the diversification benefits that bonds can offer an equity-heavy portfolio. Each fund listed here earns a Morningstar Analyst Rating of Gold.
The fund has greater latitude than Fidelity Total Bond, and it has used that flexibility to dial down credit and interest-rate risk in recent years. Unfortunately for the fund, those risks have generally paid off, even with rates rising more recently.
Bill Gross’ track record as a bond fund manager has been roundly — and unfairly — criticized. Gross earlier this week announced his retirement from mutual-fund management. It’s no secret that Gross’ investment performance, while phenomenal up until 2014, thereafter took a dramatic turn for the worse and over the past four-plus years has been dismal.
The linchpin of the Bucket Approach is one to two years' worth of living expenses set aside in cash instruments. By using broad-based index funds, you can easily determine which holdings to peel back on and where to add. Because many retirees have large shares of their portfolios in low-returning investments like cash and bonds, focusing on very low-cost investments is an easy way to enhance take-home returns.
Whereas the previous generation of retirees may have been able to easily generate a livable income with a combination of bond and dividend payments, doing so today is a heavier lift. Pioneered by financial-planning guru Harold Evensky, the Bucket approach is simply a total-return portfolio combined with a cash component to meet near-term living expenses. The long-term portion of the portfolio includes income-producing securities, but its main goal is to maximize long-term total return.
Note: This article is part of Morningstar's 2019 Portfolio Tuneup week. The past few decades have brought huge challenges for retirees and pre-retirees: two market crashes, the ebbing away of pension plans, and dramatically declining interest rates (which are finally starting to head back up). The Bucket approach to retirement planning doesn't solve all of those problems.
Note: This article is part of Morningstar's 2019 Portfolio Tuneup week. A version of this article appeared on Jan. 26, 2018. Safety and quality are the watchwords of my conservative bucket portfolio, geared toward older retirees with a time horizon of 15 years or fewer.
Matt and Emma have accomplished much in their adult lives thus far. The pair, both 40, met and built their careers at the same large technology firm: Emma is a software developer and Matt is a project manager. Emma earns $170,000 and Matt $120,000.
Corporate bonds were a definite bright spot for investors in 2016 and 2017 as they came off lows hit in February 2016. Investment-grade corporates in the Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond Index outpaced the broad index sharply in 2016 and 2017 before suffering meaningful losses in 2018, thanks in part to the prevalence of long-maturity debt in the sector and an increase in the yield required by investors to hold investment-grade corporate debt. On the surface, economic conditions would look to bode well for corporate bonds.
Being neither the fish of registered mutual funds nor the fowl of unregistered alternatives, interval funds do not fit seamlessly into existing “platforms”--the technology systems that oversee client accounts.
Emerging-markets debt is quite common within global, multisector, and nontraditional bond funds. It's less well known, however, that emerging-markets bond allocations have become more common in core bond funds. In recent years, scores of intermediate-bond funds have sported high-single-digit to low-teens stakes in emerging-markets debt (that includes both U.S. dollar-denominated bonds as well as the much more volatile issues denominated in local currencies).
In the spring of 2013, PIMCO Total Return PTTRX was the world's largest mutual fund. Intermediate-term bond funds by nature are sedate, and PIMCO Total Return has been no exception. Along with the fracas at TCW (when the company terminated Jeff Gundlach), the outflows at PIMCO Total Return--and the subsequent exit of co-founder Bill Gross--generated arguably the most attention ever placed on a bond fund.
Passive, index-based bond exchange traded funds have helped investors ride the bull rally in fixed-income assets in recent years, but changing market conditions will have to force them to reconsider their investment options. At the Inside ETFs Canada conference in Montreal, Patrick O’Connor, head of global exchange-traded funds at Franklin Templeton Investments, argued that fixed-income indices are "broken" and active management will become necessary for successful bond ETFs, reports Kristine Owram for Financial Advisors. “Investors typically have gone into passive fixed income primarily because that’s all there was,” O’Connor said.
The following is our latest Fund Analyst Report for PIMCO Income PIMIX . Morningstar Premium Members have access to full analyst reports such as this for more than 1,000 of the largest and best mutual funds. Dan Ivascyn and Alfred Murata make effective use of PIMCO's bountiful human and analytical resources, including a very large group of mortgage and real estate specialists.
In April, Morningstar Manager Research analysts affirmed the Morningstar Analyst Ratings of 143 funds and three target-date series, upgraded the ratings of eight funds, downgraded the ratings of 10 funds, placed three funds' ratings under review, and assigned new ratings to three funds. The fund's leaders--Scott Mather, Mihir Worah, and Mark Kiesel (Morningstar Fixed-Income Fund Manager of 2012)--have found their groove as a team, and PIMCO's world-class research staff has been augmented, in some cases by senior-level alumni returning to the firm. While the fund had some hiccups under its current team in 2015, it has done well since, benefiting from well-timed interest-rate calls and a continued bet on nonagency mortgages.