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Core Bond Fund

Seeks a total return consistent with income generation and prudent investment management

  • Emphasizes risk-adjusted returns and may be considered for the primary element of a fixed income portfolio
  • Seeks outperformance through a disciplined, relative value approach to sector allocation, research-driven security selection and duration management
  • Portfolio managers average 25+ years of experience, backed by a team of over 150 members in eight global locations, overseeing more than $130 billion in fixed income assets

 

Portfolio Managers (left to right): Nate Kush, Thanos Bardas, Brad Tank, David Brown and Thomas Marthaler

Daily Pricing

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Average Annual Total Returns

  • Daily (as of )
  • Monthly (as of )
  • Quarterly (as of )

Performance data quoted represent past performance, which is no guarantee of future results. The investment return and principal value of an investment will fluctuate so that an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original costs. Results are shown on a “total return” basis and include reinvestment of all dividends and capital gain distributions. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance data quoted.

Annualized Total Returns with sales charge reflect deduction of current maximum initial sales charge of 5.75% for Class A shares of equity funds and alternative funds (except alternatives funds that invest primarily in fixed income instruments), and 4.25% for Class A shares of fixed income funds and alternative funds that primarily invest in fixed income instruments, and 2.50% for Class A shares of short-term fixed income funds and applicable contingent deferred sales charges (CDSC) for Class C shares. The maximum CDSC for Class C shares is 1%, which is reduced to 0% after 1 year. Please see each fund’s prospectus for the applicable sales charge. For funds with less than one year of performance, returns shown are cumulative rather than annualized.

$10,000 Hypothetical Investment

Calendar Year Returns

Without Sales Charge

Performance figures would be reduced if sales charges were applied.

  • 3-Year Risk Return Profile
  • 3-Year Upside / Downside Capture

3-Year Risk Return Profile

As of

Standard Deviation is a statistical measure of portfolio risk. The Standard Deviation describes the average deviation of the portfolio returns from the mean portfolio return over a certain period of time. Standard Deviation measures how wide this range of returns typically is. The wider the typical range of returns, the higher the Standard Deviation of returns, and the higher the portfolio risk.

3-Year Upside / Downside Capture

As of

Up Capture Ratio is a measure of the manager’s performance in up markets relative to the market itself. A value of 110 suggests the manager performs ten percent better than the market when the market is up. The Upside Capture Ratio is calculated by dividing the return of the manager during the up market periods by the return of the market during the same periods.

Down Capture Ratio is a measure of the manager’s performance in down markets relative to the market itself. A value of 90 suggests the manager’s loss is only nine tenths of the market’s loss. The Downside Capture Ratio is calculated by dividing the return of the manager during the down periods by the return of the market during the same periods.

Top Ten Holdings

As of

Top Ten Industries

As of

The composition, industries, and holdings of the Fund are as of the date indicated and subject to change without notice.

Portfolio Characteristics

As of

Share Class
Symbol
CUSIP
Share Class Inception Date
Gross Expense Ratio
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Net Expense Ratio
(%)

Sector Allocation1

Morningstar Ratings

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Overall
3 Year
5 Year
10 Year

Fund Materials

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Management Team

An investor should consider the Fund’s investment objectives, risks and fees and expenses carefully before investing. This and other important information can be found in the Fund’s prospectus and summary prospectus, which you can obtain by calling 877.628.2583. Please read the prospectus and summary prospectus carefully before making an investment. The prospectus contains a more complete discussion of the risk of investing in the Fund. Investments could result in loss of principal.

For each retail mutual fund with at least a three-year history, Morningstar calculates a Morningstar Rating based on a Morningstar Risk-Adjusted Return measure that accounts for variation in a fund’s monthly performance (including the effects of sales charges, loads, and redemption fees), placing more emphasis on downward variations and rewarding consistent performance. The top 10% of funds in each category receive five stars, the next 22.5% receive four stars, the next 35% receive three stars, the next 22.5% receive two stars and the bottom 10% receive one star. (Each share class is counted as a fraction of one fund within this scale and rated separately, which may cause slight variations in the distribution percentages.) The Overall Morningstar Rating for a retail mutual fund is derived from a weighted average of the performance figures associated with its three-, five- and ten-year (if applicable) Morningstar Rating metrics. Ratings are ©2018 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. The information contained herein: (1) is proprietary to Morningstar and/or its content providers; (2) may not be copied or distributed; and (3) is not warranted to be accurate, complete or timely. Neither Morningstar nor its content providers are responsible for any damages or losses arising from any use of this information.

Shares in the Fund may fluctuate, sometimes significantly, based on interest rates, market conditions, credit quality and other factors. In a rising interest rate environment, the value of an income fund is likely to fall. Generally, bond values will decline as interest rates rise.

The market’s behavior is unpredictable and there can be no guarantee that the Fund will achieve its goal. The Fund’s performance could be affected if borrowers pay back principal on certain debt securities, such as mortgage- or asset-backed securities, before or after the market anticipates such payments, shortening or lengthening their duration, and could magnify the effect of the rate increase on such security’s price. Derivatives can be highly complex, can create investment leverage and may be highly volatile, and the Fund could lose more than the amount it invests. Derivatives may be difficult to value and may at times be highly illiquid, and the Fund may not be able to close out or sell a derivative position at a particular time or at an anticipated price. The Fund’s investments in derivatives create counterparty risk. To the extent the Fund invests more heavily in particular bond market sectors, its performance will be especially sensitive to developments that significantly affect those sectors. When-issued/delayed-delivery securities can have a leverage-like effect on the Fund, which may increase fluctuations in the Fund’s share price and may cause the Fund to liquidate positions when it may not be advantageous to do so to satisfy its purchase obligations.

Unless otherwise stated, information (including holdings and portfolio characteristics) is as of the quarter end indicated in the document title and is subject to change without notice.

The Fund’s Investment Manager (the “Manager”) currently caps certain Class A, Class C, Investor Class and Institutional Class expenses. Absent such arrangement, which is subject to change, the total returns would have been less. Prior to February 28, 2008, the Fund had a different goal, to maximize income without undue risk to principal and investment strategy which limited its ability to invest in derivatives and non-USD denominated securities and as such performance from June 13, 2005 to February 28, 2008 might have been different if the current policies had been in effect. The Fund is the successor to Ariel Premier Bond Fund (“Ariel Bond Fund”). The total return data for the Fund’s Institutional Class prior to June 13, 2005 is that of the Ariel Fund Institutional Class from October 1, 1995 (inception date) and the total return data for the Fund’s Investor Class is that of the Ariel Fund Institutional Class for the period October 1, 1995 through January 31, 1997 and the Ariel Fund Investor Class for the period February 1, 1997 through June 10, 2005. The investment policies, guidelines and restrictions of the Fund are in all material respects equivalent to Ariel Bond Fund. Ariel Bond Fund Institutional Class had lower expenses and typically higher returns than Ariel Bond Fund Investor Class. Returns would have been lower if the manager of Ariel Bond Fund had not waived certain of its fees during the periods shown. The Investor Class is closed to new investors.

The Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond Index is an unmanaged index that represents the U.S. domestic investment-grade bond market. It is comprised of the Bloomberg Barclays Government/ Corporate Bond Index, Mortgage-Backed Securities Index, and Asset-Backed Securities Index, including securities that are of investment-grade quality or better, have at least one year to maturity, and have an outstanding par value of at least $250 million. Please note that indices do not take into account any fees and expenses of investing in the individual securities that they track, and that individuals cannot invest directly in any index. Data about the performance of these indices are prepared or obtained by the Manager and reflect the reinvestment of income dividends and other distributions, if any. The Fund may invest in many securities not included in the above-described indices.

Net expense ratio represents the total annual operating expenses that shareholders pay (after the effect of fee waivers and/or expense reimbursement). The Manager contractually caps certain expenses of the Fund (excluding interest, taxes, brokerage commissions, acquired fund fees and expenses, dividend and interest expenses relating to short sales, and extraordinary expenses, if any; consequently, net expense ratio may exceed the contractual cap) through 10/31/2021 for Institutional Class at 0.45%, Investor Class at 0.85%, Class A at 0.85%, Class C at 1.60% (each as a % of average net assets). Absent such arrangements, which cannot be changed without Board approval, the returns may have been lower. Information as of the most recent prospectus dated February 28, 2018.

Beta (average 3-year shown) is a measure of market-related risk (expressed between 0-1%) of a portfolio compared to that of the overall market, as represented by an index. The lower the beta the lower the sensitivity to the movements of the market, as represented by the index. Sharpe Ratio (average 3-year shown) is a measure of the risk-adjusted return of a portfolio. The ratio represents the return gained per unit of risk taken. The Sharpe ratio can be used to compare the performance of managers. Managers with the same excess return for a period but different levels of risk will have Sharpe ratios that reflect the difference in the level of risk. Standard Deviation (average 3-year shown) is a statistical measure of portfolio risk. The Standard Deviation describes the average deviation of the portfolio returns from the mean portfolio return over a certain period of time. Standard Deviation measures how wide this range of returns typically is. The wider the typical range of returns, the higher the Standard Deviation of returns, and the higher the portfolio risk. Upside Capture is a measure of the manager’s performance in up markets relative to the market itself. A value of 110 suggests the manager performs ten percent better than the market when the market is up. During the selected time period, the return for the market for each period is considered an up market period if it is greater than zero. Upside Capture is calculated by dividing the return of the manager during the up market periods by the return of the market during the same periods. Downside Capture is a measure of the manager’s performance in down markets relative to the market itself. A value of 90 suggests the manager’s loss is only nine tenths of the market’s loss. During the selected time period the return for the market for each period is considered a down market period if it is less than zero. Downside Capture is calculated by dividing the return of the manager during the down periods by the return of the market during the same periods. Weighted Average Maturity is expected average life to worst or in other words the par-weighted average time (in years) to principal repayment for securitized assets or the time (in years) to probable call/put for non-securitized assets. Average Effective Duration can be a useful tool in measuring the price sensitivity of the portfolio to changes in interest rates and measures the % change in price for a 100 bps of shift in interest rates. Unlike other measures of duration, average effective duration takes into account any optionalities (e.g. whether the instrument is callable at a certain price) embedded within each security in the portfolio. Generally, the larger the duration, the more sensitive the portfolio will be to a change in interest rates. Instruments with higher effective durations often carry more risk and have higher price volatility than those with lower durations.

A fund’s 30-day SEC yield is similar to a yield to maturity for the entire portfolio. The formula is designated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Absent any expense cap arrangement noted above, the SEC yields may have been lower. A negative 30-day SEC yield results when a Fund’s accrued expenses exceed its income for the relevant period. Please note, in such instances the 30-day SEC yield may not equal the Fund’s actual rate of income earned and distributed by the fund and therefore, a per share distribution may still be paid to shareholders. The unsubsidized 30-day SEC yields for Class A, Class C, Institutional Class and Investor Class are 2.80%, 2.05%, 3.18% and 2.56%, respectively.

This material is general in nature and is not directed to any category of investors and should not be regarded as individualized, a recommendation, investment advice or a suggestion to engage in or refrain from any investment-related course of action.   Neuberger Berman is not providing this material in a fiduciary capacity and has a financial interest in the sale of its products and services.  Investment decisions and the appropriateness of this material should be made based on an investor's individual objectives and circumstances and in consultation with his or her advisors.  Accordingly, “retail” retirement investors are not the intended recipient of this material as they are expected to engage the services of an advisor in evaluating this material for any investment decision.  If your understanding is different, we ask that you inform us immediately.

The views expressed in this material do not constitute investment advice or recommendations by portfolio management or the Manager.

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