Muni Bond Fund Portfolio

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Feb 15, 2010 12:21 pm

Looking for some assistance in putting together a group of muni bond funds that do a good job of managing principal fluctuations. Individual bonds aren't an option. I would like to use 4 or 5 different funds. Thanks.

Feb 15, 2010 12:38 pm

I think the best options would be a Cali Tax free fund if your state does not have income tax (Texas does not, which is where I am at), and then an intermediate and short term fund. The Cali serves as a pseudo high yield fund with lower risk. I like Dodge & Cox and Templeton for tax free funds personally.

Feb 15, 2010 1:11 pm

I agree with the Templeton and would also look at Lord Abbett.  In the Jones core list, which is ranked on 5 year performance here are the best:

 
Short - MTLFX - MFS Muni Lmtd Maturity
Intermediate - VKLMX - Van Kampen Interm-Term Muni
Long - MFIAX - MFS Muni Income
 
There's also a core plus which only has two funds on it.  They are PBMFX and MOMTX, both Pioneer funds, the first being an AMT free fund. 
 
Can you do UITs for this client or just funds?  If you can, then VK has an insured muni trust. 
Feb 15, 2010 1:34 pm

Thanks Spiff.

 
They pulled UIT's from our platform last year.
Feb 15, 2010 2:03 pm

The PIMCO funds that ML just mentioned are great.

I also use Franklin Templeton's National Muni and High Yield. They also have some decent state specific funds (I don't think they have IL though).

Feb 15, 2010 2:51 pm
Spaceman Spiff:

I agree with the Templeton and would also look at Lord Abbett.  In the Jones core list, which is ranked on 5 year performance here are the best:

 
Short - MTLFX - MFS Muni Lmtd Maturity
Intermediate - VKLMX - Van Kampen Interm-Term Muni
Long - MFIAX - MFS Muni Income
 
There's also a core plus which only has two funds on it.  They are PBMFX and MOMTX, both Pioneer funds, the first being an AMT free fund. 
 
Can you do UITs for this client or just funds?  If you can, then VK has an insured muni trust. 
 
I just looked at that MFS Muni Lmtd Maturity. It looks solid and it pays a full 1% C-Share trail !!!
 
 
Feb 15, 2010 3:56 pm

The VK fund C share is 1% also.  Lord Abbett's are at 90bps.  The only fund family on our preferred list that really dings you on the bond fund C share is Franklin Templeton, where they drop it to 65 bps. 

Feb 15, 2010 4:00 pm

I just figured with the duration being under 4 years that the trail would be less. Thanks for the help guys.

Feb 15, 2010 4:18 pm
Spaceman Spiff:

I agree with the Templeton and would also look at Lord Abbett.  In the Jones core list, which is ranked on 5 year performance here are the best:

 
Short - MTLFX - MFS Muni Lmtd Maturity
Intermediate - VKLMX - Van Kampen Interm-Term Muni
Long - MFIAX - MFS Muni Income
 
There's also a core plus which only has two funds on it.  They are PBMFX and MOMTX, both Pioneer funds, the first being an AMT free fund. 
 
Can you do UITs for this client or just funds?  If you can, then VK has an insured muni trust. 
How did the EDJ IPC come up with that Van Kampen fund?  The other two were decent, but the VK consistently underperforms its peers and benchmark.  It's currently rated a 2 out of 5 by Morningstar. 
 
Ron, what share class are you looking for (A,C, load waived, etc)?
Feb 15, 2010 4:21 pm

C

Feb 15, 2010 4:44 pm

Thornburg has some decent options in short and intermediate funds, LTMCX and THMCX, respectively.  In the long term, Legg Mason has one that is hitting its peers out of the park, SMMCX.

Feb 15, 2010 4:45 pm

But SMMCX doesn't pay as well.