Putnam Absolute Return Funds pursue targeted returns of 1%, 3%, 5%, or 7% above inflation over a rolling three-year period.

Absolute return funds have flexibility to reduce risk

Absolute return
Relative return
  • Defines success as positive returns
  • Seeks low volatility and limited market risk
  • Can go anywhere — universe is not limited by a benchmark
  • Defines success as beating benchmark, even if negative
  • Sets no absolute volatility targets
  • Typically favors investments within its benchmark

Freed from stock and bond allocations, absolute return strategies can pursue results less volatile than the markets

Absolute return fund
Relative return balanced fund*
  • No fixed allocations
  • Flexible to respond to changing markets
  • Can be largely independent of market volatility
  • 60% stocks
    40% bonds
  • Standard stock and bond weightings tied to benchmark
  • Vulnerable to market volatility

*Lipper defines balanced funds as typically having stock/bond ratio ranges around 60%/40%. Absolute return funds have fewer limitations on where they can invest as compared with balanced funds. They have the ability to move among security types (e.g., stocks, bonds, cash, and alternatives), capitalization ranges, styles, durations, credit qualities, and geographic regions. This flexibility in terms of asset allocation offers the advantage of improved portfolio diversification as compared with many balanced funds. Absolute return funds may also have additional risks that balanced funds might not incur such as investing in derivatives and commodities, and from the use of leverage.

Putnam Absolute Return Funds:

Absolute Return Blog

Capitalizing on the ever-expanding investment universe

The sheer variety of investable securities has grown exponentially over the past 50+ years. One way to see this expansion is to review...Continue


Investors should carefully consider the investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses of a fund before investing. For a prospectus, or a summary prospectus if available, containing this and other information for any Putnam fund or product, contact your financial representative, call Putnam at 1-888-4-PUTNAM (1-888-478-8626), or click on the prospectus section to view or download a prospectus. Please read the prospectus carefully before investing.

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