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Is NUVBX a Strong Bond Fund Right Now?

If you've been stuck searching for Mutual Fund Bond funds, consider Nuveen Intermediate Duration Municipals I (NUVBX) as a possibility. NUVBX has a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 1 (Strong Buy), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

History of Fund/Manager

Nuveen is based in Chicago, IL, and is the manager of NUVBX. Nuveen Intermediate Duration Municipals I debuted in November of 1976. Since then, NUVBX has accumulated assets of about $9.32 billion, according to the most recently available information. Paul L. Brennan is the fund's current manager and has held that role since December of 2007.

Performance

Obviously, what investors are looking for in these funds is strong performance relative to their peers. This fund carries a 5-year annualized total return of 3.14%, and is in the top third among its category peers. But if you are looking for a shorter time frame, it is also worth looking at its 3-year annualized total return of 4.62%, which places it in the middle third during this time-frame.

When looking at a fund's performance, it is also important to note the standard deviation of the returns. The lower the standard deviation, the less volatility the fund experiences. Over the past three years, NUVBX's standard deviation comes in at 3.98%, compared to the category average of 11.46%. Over the past 5 years, the standard deviation of the fund is 3.9% compared to the category average of 9.64%. This makes the fund less volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

This fund has a beta of 0.55, meaning that it is less volatile than a broad market index of fixed income securities. Taking this into account, NUVBX has a negative alpha of -0.2, which measures performance on a risk-adjusted basis.

Expenses

Costs are increasingly important for mutual fund investing, and particularly as competition heats up in this market. And all things being equal, a lower cost product will outperform its otherwise identical counterpart, so taking a closer look at these metrics is key for investors. In terms of fees, NUVBX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.44% compared to the category average of 0.80%. NUVBX is actually cheaper than its peers when you consider factors like cost.

Investors need to be aware that with this product, the minimum initial investment is $100,000; each subsequent investment has no minimum amount.

Bottom Line

Overall, Nuveen Intermediate Duration Municipals I ( NUVBX ) has a high Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively strong performance, better downside risk, and lower fees, this fund looks like a good potential choice for investors right now.

Don't stop here for your research on Mutual Fund Bond funds. We also have plenty more on our site in order to help you find the best possible fund for your portfolio. Make sure to check out www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds for more information about the world of funds, and feel free to compare NUVBX to its peers as well for additional information. For analysis of the rest of your portfolio, make sure to visit Zacks.com for our full suite of tools which will help you investigate all of your stocks and funds in one place.


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