Tuesday, May 10, 2011

World's largest bond fund Pimco indicates further loss of faith in US debt crisis, bets against US debt

PIMCO's Bill Gross, the manager of the world's largest bond fund, raised his bet against U.S. government-related debt in April to 4 percent from 3 percent, according to the company's website on Monday.

The increase, albeit small, follows Gross' move to ratchet up his bearishness in March by taking his initial short position in U.S. government-related debt, which includes Treasuries, TIPS, agencies, interest rate swaps, Treasury futures and options and FDIC-guaranteed corporate securities.

The $240 billion Total Return fund also raised its cash position to 37 percent in April from 31 percent in March, added Pacific Investment Management Co, which oversees $1.2 trillion in assets.

The Total Return fund took down its mortgage exposure to 24 percent in April from 28 percent the previous month.

The fund also decreased its allocation in investment-grade credit to 17 percent in April from 18 percent in March and junk bonds to 5 percent in April from 6 percent the previous month.

For their part, emerging markets exposure increased to 11 percent of the Total Return portfolio, up from 10 percent in March, and municipal bonds unchanged at 4 percent month-over-month.

Last Friday, Gross told Reuters that the only way he would purchase Treasuries again is if the United States heads into another recession.

Since the news that Gross had turned more bearish on government debt, reflecting his growing worries over the country's fiscal deficit and debt burden, Treasury prices have been soaring. (read more)