Mutual Funds
by 5paisa Research Team Last Updated: 2023-07-13T11:07:00+05:30
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Absolute return is a concept that has gained significant attention in mutual fund investing. Unlike traditional mutual funds that strive to outperform a benchmark index, absolute return mutual funds focus on generating positive returns regardless of market conditions. This approach aims to deliver consistent and positive results, irrespective of whether the broader market is rising or falling.

If you want a more consistent and less risky investment, consider adding absolute return in mutual funds to your overall investment plan.

What is an Absolute Return in a Mutual Fund?

Absolute return mutual funds aim to make money for investors no matter what happens in the stock market. Unlike regular mutual funds, which are compared to specific indexes, best absolute return mutual funds focus on making good profits over a set period, regardless of whether the overall market is going up or down.

One of the main things that set absolute return in mutual funds apart is their ability to use different investment methods and types of assets. They can invest in stocks, bonds and financial contracts. The primary objective is to deliver consistent positive returns, even during volatile or declining markets. Absolute return mutual funds are designed to provide investors with stability and potential returns uncorrelated with broader market movements.

It is important for investors to carefully assess the track record, investment strategy, and risk management practices of absolute return mutual funds before considering them as part of their investment portfolio.

How does Absolute Return work?

Absolute return strategies in mutual funds employ various techniques and investment strategies to generate positive returns regardless of market conditions. Here's a simplified explanation of how absolute return in mutual funds works:

Long and Short Positions: Absolute return funds can take long (buying) and short (selling) positions. The fund can profit from declining prices of certain securities or market segments by taking short positions, providing potential gains even during market downturns.

Active Management: Fund managers of absolute return funds actively monitor and adjust their portfolios to capitalize on market inefficiencies and exploit potential opportunities. They may use sophisticated investment strategies, such as market timing, sector rotation, and tactical asset allocation, to maximize returns.

Risk Management: Absolute return funds typically employ risk management techniques, such as diversification, hedging, and stop-loss orders, to protect against downside risks. These measures aim to limit potential losses and preserve capital.

Focus on Absolute Performance: Unlike traditional funds that often benchmark their performance against specific indices, absolute return funds prioritize generating positive returns over a defined time frame, regardless of how the broader market performs.

Lower Correlation: Best absolute return mutual funds strategies aim to deliver uncorrelated returns or less correlated with broader market movements. This characteristic can provide diversification benefits within an investor's portfolio and reduce the impact of market volatility.

It's important to note that absolute return in mutual funds in India strategies vary significantly across mutual funds. Investors should carefully review the fund's prospectus, investment strategy, historical performance, and risk management practices before considering an absolute return mutual fund investment.

What is the Absolute Return Formula?

One can apply the simple absolute return formula to calculate the absolute return on investment. It is computed by deducting the first investment's value from the subsequent investment's value and then expressing the result as a percentage of the initial investment. The equation reads as follows:

Absolute Return = {(Final Value - Initial Value) / Initial Value} * 100

For example, if someone initially invests Rs.10,000 and grows to a final value of Rs.12,000, the absolute return would be {(Rs.12,000 - Rs.10,000) / Rs.10,000} * 100 = 20%. This indicates a 20% absolute return on the investment.

What is an Annualized Return?

The average annual rate of return on an investment, given as a percentage, is measured by annualized return. By taking compounding effects into account, it determines the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) and aids investors in evaluating the success of an investment over several years.

Difference Between Absolute and Annualized Returns

The key difference between absolute and annualized returns lies in the time frame and calculation method. Absolute return represents the total return on an investment over a specific period, typically expressed as a percentage. It indicates the overall profit or loss generated during that specific timeframe.

On the other hand, annualized return calculates the average rate of return per year over a given investment period. It considers the compounding effect by assuming the investment's return is compounded annually. This allows investors to compare the performance of investments with different time horizons on an equal basis and evaluate their average annual growth rate. The annualized return provides a standardized metric for assessing long-term investment performance.

Use Annual Returns for Long-term Financial Goals

Utilizing annualized returns is essential for long-term financial goals. When planning for objectives like retirement, education funding, or wealth accumulation over several years, it's crucial to understand the average annual growth rate of investments clearly. By considering annualized returns, investors can evaluate the performance of their portfolio over time, accounting for compounding effects.

The History of Absolute Return Funds

The origins of absolute return funds can be found in the latter half of the 20th century. They came into being as a response to the demand for investment methods that would produce profitable returns independent of the state of the market, giving investors a potential substitute for conventional benchmark-driven funds.

Concluding Note

Absolute return in mutual funds in India have gained popularity as investment vehicles that strive to deliver positive returns irrespective of market movements. With their flexible investment approach, active management, and focus on absolute performance, these funds offer potential diversification and risk management benefits to investors seeking consistent returns in varying market conditions.

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