SOURCE: BrightScope


September 23, 2014 08:00 ET

BrightScope Ranks the Top 20 Commodities Funds Held in America's 401k Plans

PIMCO Improves Its Reign With Three Funds Ranked in the Top Five; Fidelity Also Has Three Funds Represented on the List

SAN DIEGO, CA--(Marketwired - Sep 23, 2014) - BrightScope (, a leading provider of independent financial information and investment research, today announced the Top 20 Commodities Fund Distribution List for 401k and defined contribution industry. Based on the $3.3 trillion in 401k assets BrightScope analyses, the amount of 401k assets held as commodities funds increased by 45 percent from 2010-2012. Commodities funds make up just over one percent -- $3.8 billion -- of the assets held in those plans.

"BrightScope has seen impressive growth over the past year in the most popular commodities funds held as 401k assets," said Brooks Herman, Head of Data & Research at BrightScope. "We expect that trend to continue as both plan sponsors and participants become more comfortable with alternative assets."

Noteworthy findings in the 2014 Top Commodities Funds list include:

  • Winners Club: PIMCO continues to dominate the list with PIMCO Commodity Real Return Strategy snagging the No. 1 spot for the second year in a row, and PIMCO CommoditiesPLUS Trust II and PIMCO CommoditiesPLUS Strategy coming in at No. 3 and No. 4, respectively
  • Warm Welcome: BrightScope welcomes newcomers PIMCO CommoditiesPLUS Strategy (No. 4), Invesco Balanced-Risk Commodity Strategy (No. 5), Blackrock DJ UBS Commodities Index (No. 7) and CF Axiom Offshore Opportunity Fund LTD CL A Series 2 (No. 19) to the list
  • Big Leaps: Since last year, PIMCO Commodity Real Return Strategy gained over $100 million in total 401k assets, while Prudential Jennison Natural Resources added over $91 million

The Top 20 commodities funds by total distribution and total 401k assets include:

1. PIMCO Commodity Real Return Strategy

2. Prudential Jennison Natural Resources 

3. PIMCO CommoditiesPLUS Trust II

4. PIMCO CommoditiesPLUS Strategy 

5. Invesco Balanced-Risk Commodity Strategy

6. T. Rowe Price New Era 

7. Blackrock DJ UBS Commodities Index

8. SSGA Real Return Ex-Natural Resources Equity

9. RS Global Natural Resources

10. Fidelity Global Commodity Stock

11. Van Eck Global Hard Assets

12. Investec Global Natural Resources

13. SPDR Gold Shares

14. John Hancock Funds II Natural Resources

15. Fidelity Select Chemicals

16. Ivy Global Natural Resources 

17. Credit Suisse Commodity Return Strategy

18. Fidelity Select Materials 

19. CF Axiom Offshore Opportunity Fund LTD CL A Series 2

20. SSgA Dow Jones US Commodity Fund

BrightScope obtains an increasing amount of its data directly from plan sponsors and record keepers, and augments these primary sources with data from publicly available sources such as the Department of Labor and the Securities and Exchange Commission. By analyzing and interpreting this data, BrightScope provides unprecedented transparency into the 401k industry.

The BrightScope Rating was developed by BrightScope, Inc. with the help of leading academics and independent 401k fiduciaries. By analyzing more than 200 individual data points, the BrightScope Rating algorithm calculates a single numerical value for each 401k plan. The data points examined cover broad categories such as total plan cost, company generosity and investment menu quality.

BrightScope has rated nearly 50,000 401k and 403b plans, spanning more than 57 million workers and over $3 trillion in assets. Industry adoption of the BrightScope Rating will lead to more cost-effective plans, increased participation rates, higher employee satisfaction and better outcomes for the 60 million employees who depend on their 401k plan for retirement.

About BrightScope
BrightScope is a financial information company that brings transparency to opaque markets through independent research and analysis. Delivered through web-based software, BrightScope data drives better decision-making for individual investors, corporate plan sponsors, asset managers, broker-dealers, and financial advisors. The BrightScope Rating™, developed in partnership with leading independent 401k fiduciaries, reviews more than 200 unique data inputs per plan and calculates a single numerical score which defines plan quality at the company level. In April 2011, the company launched BrightScope Advisor Pages™, the first comprehensive and publicly available directory of financial advisors designed to help consumers discover information and conduct due diligence on wealth management professionals. BrightScope also markets a suite of data analytics software products to Fortune 1000 companies, asset managers, broker-dealers, financial advisors, and other market participants. Public ratings for nearly 50,000 retirement plans as well as rating definitions, criteria and methodologies, and information on more than 680,000 financial advisors and nearly 33,000 active advisory firms are available for free at