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Group ratings: the US bond kings

Yields on US Treasuries rose after Donald Trump's election victory, capping a volatile year for American bonds- so who has been able to ride the waves the best?

GAM

GAM runs five funds in the sector, with the Julius Baer BF Dollar, GAM Star Credit Opportunities and GAM Star MBS Total Return funds each available for sale in the UK. The largest, which contributes significantly to GAM’s gold rating, is GAM Star Credit Opportunities, run by Citywire AA-rated Anthony Smouha. The fund’s largest allocation, at slightly more than 30% of the portfolio, is to fixed-tofloater- rate perpetual bonds, an investment class with a risk-return profile more like equities.

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GAM

GAM runs five funds in the sector, with the Julius Baer BF Dollar, GAM Star Credit Opportunities and GAM Star MBS Total Return funds each available for sale in the UK. The largest, which contributes significantly to GAM’s gold rating, is GAM Star Credit Opportunities, run by Citywire AA-rated Anthony Smouha. The fund’s largest allocation, at slightly more than 30% of the portfolio, is to fixed-tofloater- rate perpetual bonds, an investment class with a risk-return profile more like equities.

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Pimco

Pimco’s UK offering in the sector is its Pimco GIS Total Return Bond fund, managed by Scott Mather, Mihir Worah and Mark Kiesel since Bill Gross left the fund in 2014. It has returned 6.41% in the two years to the end of October 2016. Most recently, the fund has benefited from its allocation to Treasury inflationprotected securities (Tips), as break-even inflation rates rose, and mortgage-backed strategies. The continued improvement in housing fundamentals benefited the fund’s non-agency holdings.

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JP Morgan AM

JP Morgan offers the global investor four funds in the sector, with two registered for sale in the UK: the JPM US Aggregate Bond and the JPM US Bond funds. Of the two, the JPM US Aggregate Bond fund is the larger. It is currently managed by Douglas Swanson, Peter Simons and Barbara Miller. Swanson has been on the fund since 2006, with Simons and Miller joining in 2015. Over 10 years to the end of October 2016, the JPM US Aggregate Bond fund has returned 143.5% in sterling terms.

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Pioneer

Investments Managing the Pioneer Sicav US Dollar Aggregate fund, registered for sale in the UK, is Ken Taubes. At a global level, Pioneer also offers the Pioneer Strategic Income and Pioneer Funds US Dollar Aggregate Bond funds. Over the past year, Taubes has returned 32.7%, which ranks him third in the sector for total returns. At more than 50%, the fund’s largest allocation is to covered bonds. Four of the fund’s top 10 positions are in agency mortgagebacked securities.

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