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Delivery on ‘absolute’ promise is relative

Lexington Herald-Leader – When does "absolute" imply something that in reality is far less than certain?

When it comes to "absolute return funds." That’s the label mutual fund companies have put on hedge fund-style products that they’ve been rolling out the past three years. The funds seek to smooth out the bumpy, downward ride the markets have taken lately.

But you can still lose money, even if you manage to fare better than most investors in a downturn. Absolute return funds lost an average 11.7 percent over the 12-month period ended Wednesday, according to Morningstar Inc.

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