NEW YORK—Absolute-return funds may now only total $140 billion, a scant 1.2% of the $11.26 trillion in mutual funds, but that will grow to 10% to 15% over the next decade, predicts Putnam Investments President and Chief Executive Officer Robert Reynolds

Driving this demand will be a listless equity market for the foreseeable future and investors who now prefer positive returns to funds that simply aim to beat a benchmark and adhere to static asset allocation, styles and geographic diversification, said Reynolds and other speakers at Putnam’s Absolute Return Symposium here.

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