Oddly enough, not all near-clone funds managed by Gross carry the "total return" moniker, such as the Fremont Bond Fund.

However, does this ambiguity matter in the marketplace?

"I would say that a lot of fund names are meaningless, or close to it. Most names really are going to require that you dig a lot deeper into the strategy or portfolio," said Kinnel, adding, "It's more descriptive than Magellan or Orion."

Kinnel's comment strikes at the core of issues of fund names.

"How many people out there believe that Fidelity's Contrafund is a contrarian fund?" asked Richard Bregman, advisor at New York-based MJB Asset Management. "Fund companies are scratching and clawing every which way they can to come up with fund names. It's still incumbent on investors to know what the fund invests in."

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