PIMCO Total Return Fund Lookback

Apr 21, 2011

PIMCO's flagship fund PTTRX, the largest mutual fund in the world, filed for an active ETF yesterday. We have followed PIMCO in general for many years and find it a good example of a strategy based on tactical exposures. Note that Bill Gross is definitely NOT from the passive 'allocate and rebalance' school of portfolio management. PIMCO alters exposures consistent with its tactical views, often aggressively. This is by the way, really what index ETFs are perfectly suited to do.

2010 was something of an off-year for PIMCO Total Return, it slightly underperformed some generic treasury and corporate bond index funds. Prior to 2010, PTTRX had been performing between the return of Intermediate Treasuries and Intermediate Corporate Bonds in each of the prior 2 years. That is, Gross was able to favorably rotate between the better of the two funds. Lets take a closer look in a quick slideshow.

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We would note that you can enter a few of these bond funds into ETFreplay.com relative strength models and see how well some of these strategies work. Keep in mind you do also have many other return enhancement ETFs available with junk bonds, preferred stocks, emerging market bonds, foreign soverign and foreign credit bonds etc...

While we have been highlighting commodities for many months (something of the antithesis of fixed-income), we thought we would mention that for more conservative balanced accounts, there are an increasing number of excellent, targeted, tactical bond strategies available in ETF form.

Note: we have added the ability to backtest 50 ETFs together at once and our backtesting reports have added many new features over the past few weeks. Take a look on the Backtest App Menu

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