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How can I buy a stable-value fund?
 How can I buy a stable-value fund?
Penelope Wang, Fund Watch columnist
Question: I'm trying to beef up the fixed-income portion of my portfolio, and I was hoping that you could suggest a fund or two that qualify as "stable-value funds." --Merrill Melnick, Brockport, N.Y.

Answer: Stable-value funds are certainly appealing to safety-minded investors. Essentially bond funds backed by insurance, they offer the returns of short-term bonds with the stability of a money-market fund. But because of accounting rules for insurance products, you can invest in one only through a qualified plan, such as a 401(k). Your best alternative outside your plan is a CD or high-yield bank account, which would add the security of FDIC insurance.

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