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Balanced Funds

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BUSINESS
By Andrew Leckey | August 18, 1993
Investing is always a balancing act.But finding equilibrium has never been more important than it is in this year of persistent nervousness about a possible stock market correction.Balanced mutual funds, which mix stocks and bonds to reduce volatility, are becoming a popular answer. They've ballooned from $29 billion in assets to more than $48 billion in the last year.Constructed so that bonds usually constitute at least 20 percent of their portfolios, balanced funds are an investment bridge for conservative folks leaving low-yield certificates of deposit but wary of the stock market's vagaries.
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BUSINESS
By Andrew Leckey and Andrew Leckey,Tribune Media Services | March 4, 2007
Most investors are willing to assume some degree of risk in the pursuit of better returns. But while they will grin and bear meager results for a while, they have little or no patience with investments that actually lose money. Based on the reality that even trustworthy large-capitalization stocks have the potential to reduce principal, balanced funds that hold a mix of both stocks and bonds are becoming the centerpieces of many individual portfolios. "Large-cap stock funds were the anchor right up until the time stocks underperformed," said Ryan Caldwell, a portfolio manager of Waddell & Reed Advisors Asset Strategy Fund, a balanced fund in Overland Park, Kan. "There's been a definite switch, with balanced funds finding their way into investor portfolios as a core holding, around which higher-risk investments such as small-cap growth stocks are added."
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BUSINESS
By Liz Pulliam and Liz Pulliam,ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER | March 8, 1998
The training wheels have fallen off balanced funds.For years, many financial planners and investors derided funds that combined stock and bond investments as suitable only for beginners -- if then. High fees and lackluster performance turned off others who might have liked balanced funds' convenience.Net purchases of balanced funds dropped from $14 billion in 1993 to $1.8 billion in 1995. By contrast, purchases of growth-stock funds bloomed from $21.4 billion to $37 billion.Since then, however, balanced funds have staged a comeback -- thanks to a volatile stock market and investors' reassessments of their usefulness.
BUSINESS
By Carolyn Bigda and Carolyn Bigda,Tribune Media Services | December 24, 2006
It's nice to have choices. But in some cases too many options may be more detrimental than helpful. At least that's the idea behind a new series of mutual funds that AARP Financial, a subsidiary of the membership organization, introduced in January. And though AARP is geared toward the 50-plus crowd, these funds may be just as appropriate for investors in their 20s. AARP Financial was launched in 2005 in response to worries that workers are not accumulating enough savings for retirement.
BUSINESS
By WERNER REINBERG | March 17, 1991
You have seen the data showing that over the years, on th average, it's more profitable to be invested in sound stocks -- despite their occasional plunges -- than in bonds, CDs, or other financial assets.You also are aware that, when accumulating a nest egg, you may be better off investing in stocks indirectly through mutual funds because they provide professional management as well as greater diversification than you could realize by buying stocks on your own.But even if you could set aside enough money to meet the low minimum requirements of a couple of funds with different investment objectives, you may prefer to invest in only one fund.
BUSINESS
By WERNER RENBERG | July 5, 1992
If you believe a mutual fund could help you to achieve your long-term financial goals and if at last you have the money to begin investing in one, are you putting it off because of talk that stock prices are due for a correction from their near-record levels?Alternatively, if you are a few years from retirement and are invested in equity funds that live up to your expectations, does such talk make you want to reduce your exposure to the stock market now -- while continuing to aim for a decent return and inflation protection?
BUSINESS
April 26, 1994
Legg Mason completes purchaseLegg Mason Inc. said yesterday that it has completed its previously announced purchase of Gray, Seifert & Co. for undisclosed terms.Gray Seifert, a closely held New York investment counseling firm, has about $700 million under management in equity and balanced funds.
BUSINESS
By Andrew Leckey and Andrew Leckey,Tribune Media Services | March 4, 2007
Most investors are willing to assume some degree of risk in the pursuit of better returns. But while they will grin and bear meager results for a while, they have little or no patience with investments that actually lose money. Based on the reality that even trustworthy large-capitalization stocks have the potential to reduce principal, balanced funds that hold a mix of both stocks and bonds are becoming the centerpieces of many individual portfolios. "Large-cap stock funds were the anchor right up until the time stocks underperformed," said Ryan Caldwell, a portfolio manager of Waddell & Reed Advisors Asset Strategy Fund, a balanced fund in Overland Park, Kan. "There's been a definite switch, with balanced funds finding their way into investor portfolios as a core holding, around which higher-risk investments such as small-cap growth stocks are added."
BUSINESS
By GAIL MARKSJARVIS and GAIL MARKSJARVIS,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | May 21, 2006
Suddenly, investors have turned from giddy to gloomy, as the Dow has dropped more than 500 points since May 10. If you were caught in the downturn of 2000 and vowed to never let the market erode your savings again, you might be hunting for a place to take shelter now. If you do, of course, you may miss the next move up in stocks, or protect yourself from the next move down. No analyst can tell you with certainty what will come next. But many say the market simply seems to be getting knocked down a peg as investors try to make sense of reports pointing to higher inflation, rising interest rates and economic slowing.
BUSINESS
By BLOOMBERG BUSINESS NEWS | September 8, 1996
BOSTON -- Fidelity Investments has reduced the management fees of its Asset Manager, Balanced and Puritan portfolios in steps analysts said should make the funds more competitive with rival funds.The No. 1 U.S. fund company cut a component of the management fee of the $10.5 billion Asset Manager Fund by 15 basis points, or $1.50 per $1,000 invested. Asset Manager Fund now has a management fee of 56 basis points, or $5.60 per $1,000 invested.Fidelity said it lowered the overall management fee of its $16.7 billion Puritan Fund by 5 basis points, or $5 per $1,000 invested.
BUSINESS
By CHARLES JAFFE and CHARLES JAFFE,MARKETWATCH | August 15, 2006
If you could pick just one fund for all of your retirement savings, what would it be? Experts, editors and investors have kicked that question around for decades without a satisfactory answer, but the U.S. Department of Labor will try to at least give a partial answer in the next few months. It's part of the fallout from the Pension Protection Act of 2006, a bill recently approved by Congress and now awaiting President Bush's signature. The issue stems from the bill encouraging employers to automatically enroll workers into their company's retirement plan.
BUSINESS
By GAIL MARKSJARVIS and GAIL MARKSJARVIS,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | May 21, 2006
Suddenly, investors have turned from giddy to gloomy, as the Dow has dropped more than 500 points since May 10. If you were caught in the downturn of 2000 and vowed to never let the market erode your savings again, you might be hunting for a place to take shelter now. If you do, of course, you may miss the next move up in stocks, or protect yourself from the next move down. No analyst can tell you with certainty what will come next. But many say the market simply seems to be getting knocked down a peg as investors try to make sense of reports pointing to higher inflation, rising interest rates and economic slowing.
BUSINESS
By CHARLES JAFFE | July 17, 2005
THE PROBLEM with traveling down the middle of the road is that you're being passed on all sides and are in constant danger of being run over. And yet when it comes to mutual funds, investors are flocking to the center of the pack, making dull, boring moderation seem like an absolute fad. The problem with this trend is not just that there can be a financial price to pay, it's that in the search for a simpler existence, some investors are messing up...
BUSINESS
By MORNINGSTAR.COM | December 28, 2003
Leave it to the financial community to put a price tag on Christmas. PNC Advisors Christmas Price Index calculated the price of 12 drummers drumming on down to a partridge in a pear tree. It had grown to more than $65,000 this year - as much as a luxury SUV. If you're looking for an alternative to dancers and pipers, consider some of these classic mutual funds: 1. and 2. Balanced funds can play a role in many investors' portfolios. Whether it's funding a college UTMA account or providing that first investment experience, balanced funds offer instant diversification all tied up with a bow. Two of my favorite balanced funds are Dodge & Cox Balanced (DODBX)
BUSINESS
By Russel Kinnel and Russel Kinnel,MORNINGSTAR.COM | August 25, 2002
Do you know who manages the bond half of your balanced fund? Are you disappointed by your balanced fund's performance? If you answered "no" to the first question, you probably said "yes" to the second. Fund investors usually spend more time researching the stock part of their portfolio than the bond part. If you do that, though, you'll miss some of the protection that a well-structured bond portfolio can provide in a down market. Generally, the bond half of a balanced fund will be managed in a similar fashion to a bond fund run by the same manager.
BUSINESS
By JULIUS WESTHEIMER | April 7, 2000
How do you select your mutual funds? "You're busy. You don't have time to slog through research on all 10,945 mutual funds," says Family Money. "If you choose the `hottest' funds, you could run into trouble. Without warning, today's stars can turn into tomorrow's has-beens. Buy solid, long-term performers from several categories, so your portfolio is well diversified." COLLEGE CASH: "As your child gets older, your college savings portfolio must evolve -- fewer stocks, the rest in bonds and cash.
BUSINESS
By Andrew Leckey and Andrew Leckey,Tribune Media Services | August 28, 1991
It may be time to put a little balance in your investing.Balanced funds, which combine stocks and bonds in one portfolio, have attracted $1 billion in investor dollars this year. They don't have the punch of either stock or bond funds at peak performance, but they're less volatile, smoothing out the bumps on the way to solid gains.Over the past decade, balanced funds have averaged a surprisingly strong 14.67 percent annual gain, according to the Mutual Fund Values investment advisory. That compares to 13.32 percent for stock funds and 12.66 percent for bond funds.
BUSINESS
By MORNINGSTAR.COM | December 28, 2003
Leave it to the financial community to put a price tag on Christmas. PNC Advisors Christmas Price Index calculated the price of 12 drummers drumming on down to a partridge in a pear tree. It had grown to more than $65,000 this year - as much as a luxury SUV. If you're looking for an alternative to dancers and pipers, consider some of these classic mutual funds: 1. and 2. Balanced funds can play a role in many investors' portfolios. Whether it's funding a college UTMA account or providing that first investment experience, balanced funds offer instant diversification all tied up with a bow. Two of my favorite balanced funds are Dodge & Cox Balanced (DODBX)
BUSINESS
By Julius Westheimer | August 13, 1999
IN THIS high and volatile stock market, do you seek safety and reasonable income?"Investors have plenty to worry about," says Income Digest, "but the highest quality energy, communications and water utilities should preserve and grow your principal, while paying solid yields."Here are the `safest' stocks, with current yield percentages in parentheses: American Water Works Inc. (2.9 percent), Duke Energy Corp. (4.0), GTE Corp. (2.5), Keyspan Energy Corp. (6.6), Northern States Power Co. (6.4)
BUSINESS
By Jane Bryant Quinn | January 18, 1999
SAVING FOR college? Want a tax break? States are now offering two different types of tuition plans that accumulate money tax-deferred. If you don't like the plan in your own state, look for a better one somewhere else.The newest plans -- called savings plans -- invest your college money in stocks, bonds or mutual funds. They're best for families willing to gamble on long-term gains in stocks.The older plans -- called prepaid tuition plans -- guarantee enough money to cover future tuition at your state's public colleges or universities.
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