Zacks #1 Ranked Balanced Funds - Best of Funds

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Balanced funds provide investors with the convenience of buying into a single fund rather than holding both equity and bond funds. This category of funds also reduces a portfolio's volatility while providing higher returns than pure fixed income investments. Fund managers of such funds also enjoy the flexibility of varying the proportion of equity and fixed income investments in response to market conditions. An upswing may prompt them to hold a relatively higher share of equity in order to maximize gains; whereas a downturn sees them turning to fixed income investments to stem losses.

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 .

Virtus Balanced A (PHBLX) seeks capital appreciation and capital conservation. It invests 65% of its assets in common stocks and fixed income securities of both domestic and foreign companies. These include companies from emerging economies irrespective of market capitalization. The fund invests the fixed income part of its portfolio mostly in investment grade bonds. The balanced mutual fund has returned 11.6% over the last one year period.


As of June 2014, the fund held 523 issues with 1.16% of its assets invested in Trinity Industries Inc.

Virtus Tactical Allocation A (NAINX) invests 40% to 65% of its assets in equities, 35% to 60% in fixed income instruments and a maximum of 25% of its assets in cash or cash equivalents. It invests 15% to 50% of its assets in foreign companies, through American Depositary Receipts (ADRs). It maintains a dollar-weighted average duration of 2 to 8 years. The fund seeks capital growth with income. The balanced mutual fund has returned 12.1% over the last one year period.

The fund has an expense ratio of 1.29% as compared to category average of 0.93%.

T. Rowe Price Balanced (RPBAX) seeks capital appreciation and income. It invests 65% and 35% of its assets in common stocks and fixed income instruments, respectively. It invests a minimum of 25% of its assets in fixed income senior securities and a maximum of 35% in foreign securities. The balanced mutual fund has returned 11.7% over the last one year period.

Charles M. Shriver is the portfolio manager and has managed this fund since 2011.

Federated MDT Balanced A (QABGX) invests around 60% of its assets in equities and 40% in fixed income instruments and other securities including ETFs, foreign securities and hybrid instruments and derivatives. The allocation may vary by 20% depending on economic and market conditions. The fund seeks long-term capital growth with income. The balanced mutual fund has returned 11.3% over the last one year period.

The fund has an expense ratio of 1.30% as compared to category average of 0.93%.

Nuveen Strategy Balanced Allocation A (FSGNX) seeks capital appreciation and current income. It allocates its assets in underlying funds that invests in equities and fixed income instruments. In order to maximize its return, it may also invest in absolute return fund. The balanced mutual fund has returned 10.3% over the last one year period.

As of June 2014, the fund held 45 issues with 8.9% of its assets invested in Nuveen Tactical Market Opportunities I.

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 in our Mutual Fund Center .


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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Mutual Funds


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