In an era of low interest rates, geopolitical uncertainty and predictions of rising inflation, the pressure on asset managers and advisers to provide a reliable and sustainable return cannot be underestimated.
Bonds are, or have been seen as a safer option, a way of bagging an almost all but guaranteed return.
Fund managers have responded to investors ever hungry for the security of bond investing by offering them access to funds which include diversified portfolios of bonds.
These strategic bonds have grown hugely in popularity, and the Strategic Bond sector was the Investment Association's most popular sector in November 2016. A £50m net inflow made it the best-selling fixed income sector for the first time in more than a year.
But strategic bonds are themselves diverse offerings with different approaches and one size most certainly does not fit all.
This guide will aim to provide an informative look at strategic bonds including:
What makes a bond fund 'strategic'.
Why is there such a difference between various strategic bonds in the IA sector.
The role they can or should play in an investor's portfolio.
Alternatives to a strategic bond fund - and the pros and cons of these.