PIMCO’s Bill Gross was in the news Thursday as the eagerly awaited ETF version of Total Return Fund began trading.

The bond manager’s latest investment outlook suggests investors in PIMCO Total Return ETF (NYSEArca: TRXT) can expect Gross to play some defense.

Investors are in a “new age” with yields at “the zero bound,” he wrote. “And it seems to us at PIMCO that successful investing in a deleveraging, low interest rate environment will require defensive in addition to offensive skills,” Gross said.

Going forward, PIMCO’s “playbook” is to recognize zero bound limits and systemic debt risk in global financial markets, emphasize relatively reliable and safe income, and seek consistent alpha, or risk-adjusted performance.

Total Return ETF Launches

The ETF clone of the $250 billion PIMCO Total Return Fund, which is managed by Gross, started trading Thursday. [PIMCO ETF Puts Focus on Active ETFs]

It will be the first actively managed ETF backed by a highly visible and respected manager like Gross. [PIMCO Total Return ETF Set to Begin Trading Thursday]

The move could also shake up the mutual fund business and have an impact on how investment products are distributed. The ETF version of PIMCO Total Return Fund will let most individual investors gain access with lower fees. TRXT has an expense ratio of 0.55%. [All Eyes on PIMCO Total Return ETF Launch]

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of John Spence, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.