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Merian brings total return bond fund home as Gross retires

Merian brings total return bond fund home as Gross retires

Merian Global Investors has brought the management of its total return bond fund in house following the retirement of Bill Gross. 

Merian had outsourced the $195 million (£150 million) Merian Total Return USD bond fund to Janus Henderson's Gross (pictured) until February this year. The bond veteran announced his retirement at the start of March. 

The fund will now be managed by Merian’s Mark Nash and Nick Wall and renamed the Merian Global Dynamic Bond fund. The fund will sit alongside the pair's Merian Global Strategic Bond fund. 

While the fund’s objective is unchanged, Merian will introduce a number of changes to the investment approach. 

These include: 

* An expanded global investment remit, with the restriction that a minimum of 80% of assets must be held in US dollar denominated fixed-income securities removed

* The benchmark moving from the Barclays Capital US Aggregate Bond Index to the Bloomberg Barclays Global Aggregate Index (USD Hedged) to reflect the fund’s broader geographic reach

* Additional scope to invest in a wider range of securities, including an increased amount of below investment grade corporate bonds, contingent convertible bonds and collective investment schemes

Merian will hope these changes can build on the fund's strong track record, which has seen it return 14.2% in the three years to the end of March versus a peer group average of 6.4%. 

It believes the changes will result in a more flexible fund that allows investors to benefit from the best investment opportunities from across the global fixed income and currency universes.

Nash (pictured above) said: 'With the recent change in the policy direction of developed market central banks having a profound impact on fixed income markets, we believe now is an opportune time to expand the investment universe and flexibility of this fund.

'Using the sector-specialist skills from across the desk and our strict risk governance framework, we look forward to identifying the best alpha opportunities for clients.' 

Merian managing director distribution Warren Tonkinson added: 'We are confident that, following these changes, investors in the fund will benefit from our proven-team based approach, as well as its expanded investment universe.

'We’d like to thank Janus Henderson for running the fund until now.' 

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