Fund Goal and Approach
The fund seeks current income with some consideration for capital appreciation.To pursue its goal, the fund normally allocates its net assets among other mutual funds advised by The Dreyfus Corporation or its affiliates, referred to as underlying funds, that invest in a wide range of equity and fixed-income securities. The fund normally allocates 60% of its assets to the fixed-income asset class and 40% of its assets to the equity asset class by investing in underlying funds that invest primarily in fixed-income and equity securities, respectively. The fund may invest in underlying funds that invest in U.S. and international fixed-income securities, which comprise the fixed-income asset category. The fund also may invest in underlying funds that invest in U.S. large-, mid- and small- cap equity securities, international equity securities, emerging markets equity securities and global equity securities, which comprise the equity asset category.
Although an investor may achieve the same level of diversification by investing directly in a variety of Dreyfus-managed funds, the fund provides investors with a means to simplify their investment decisions by investing in a single diversified portfolio. The fund is designed for investors with lower risk tolerances.
An investment in the fund is not a bank deposit. It is not insured or guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) or any other government agency. It is not a complete investment program. The fund's share price fluctuates, sometimes dramatically, which means you could lose money.
An investment in the fund is subject to the following principal risks:
* Allocation risk. The ability of the fund to achieve its investment goal depends, in part, on the ability of the Dreyfus Investment Committee to allocate effectively the fund's assets among the underlying funds. There can be no assurance that the actual allocations will be effective in achieving the fund's investment goal. The underlying funds may not achieve their investment objectives, and their performance may be lower than that of the overall performance of the asset class the underlying funds were selected to represent. The fund typically invests in a number of different underlying funds; however, to the extent the fund invests a significant portion of its assets in a single underlying fund, the fund will be more sensitive to the risks associated with that underlying fund and any investments in which that underlying fund concentrates.
* Conflicts of interest risk. The fund's investment adviser, Dreyfus, or its affiliates may serve as investment adviser to the underlying funds. The interests of the fund on the one hand, and those of an underlying fund on the other, will not always be the same. Therefore, conflicts may arise as the investment adviser fulfills its fiduciary duty to the fund and the underlying funds. In addition, the Dreyfus Investment Committee recommends asset allocations among the underlying funds, each of which pays advisory fees at different rates to Dreyfus or its affiliates. These situations are considered by the fund's board when it reviews the asset allocations for the fund.
* Correlation risk. Although the prices of equity securities and fixed-income securities often rise and fall at different times so that a fall in the price of one may be offset by a rise in the price of the other, in down markets the prices of these securities can also fall in tandem. Because the fund invests in equity securities and fixed-income securities, it is subject to correlation risk.
The fund is subject to the same principal risks as the underlying funds in which it invests, which are summarized below. For more information regarding these and other risks of the underlying funds, see the prospectus for the specific underlying fund.
* Risks of stock investing. Stocks generally fluctuate more in value than bonds and may decline significantly over short time periods. There is the chance that stock prices overall will decline because stock markets tend to move in cycles, with periods of rising prices and falling prices. The market value of a stock may decline due to general weakness in the stock market or because of factors that affect the company or its particular industry.
* Large cap stock risk. To the extent the fund invests in large capitalization stocks, the fund may underperform funds that invest primarily in the stocks of lower quality, smaller capitalization companies during periods when the stocks of such companies are in favor.
* Small and midsize company risk. Small and midsize companies carry additional risks because the operating histories of these companies tend to be more limited, their earnings and revenues less predictable (and some companies may be experiencing significant losses), and their share prices more volatile than those of larger, more established companies. The shares of smaller companies tend to trade less frequently than those of larger, more established companies, which can adversely affect the pricing of these securities and the fund's ability to sell these securities.
* Foreign investment risk. To the extent the fund invests in foreign securities, the fund's performance will be influenced by political, social and economic factors affecting investments in foreign issuers. Special risks associated with investments in foreign issuers include exposure to currency fluctuations, less liquidity, less developed or less efficient trading markets, lack of comprehensive company information, political and economic instability and differing auditing and legal standards. Investments denominated in foreign currencies are subject to the risk that such currencies will decline in value relative to the U.S. dollar and affect the value of these investments held by the fund.
* Interest rate risk. Prices of bonds tend to move inversely with changes in interest rates. Typically, a rise in rates will adversely affect bond prices and, accordingly, the fund's share price. The longer the effective maturity and duration of the fund's fixed-income portfolio, the more the fund's share price is likely to react to interest rates. For example, the market price of a fixed-income security with a duration of three years would be expected to decline 3% if interest rates rose 1%. Conversely, the market price of the same security would be expected to increase 3% if interest rates fell 1%.
* Credit risk. Failure of an issuer to make timely interest or principal payments, or a decline or perception of a decline in the credit quality of a bond, can cause the bond's price to fall, potentially lowering the fund's share price. The lower a bond's credit rating, the greater the chance ¿ in the rating agency's opinion ¿ that the bond issuer will default or fail to meet its payment obligations. High yield ("junk") bonds involve greater credit risk, including the risk of default, than investment grade bonds, and are considered predominantly speculative with respect to the issuer's continuing ability to make principal and interest payments. The prices of high yield bonds can fall dramatically in response to bad news about the issuer or its industry, or the economy in general.
* Market sector risk. The fund may significantly overweight or underweight certain companies, industries or market sectors, which may cause the fund's performance to be more or less sensitive to developments affecting those companies, industries or sectors.
* Liquidity risk. When there is little or no active trading market for specific types of securities, it can become more difficult to sell the securities in a timely manner at or near their perceived value. In such a market, the value of such securities and the fund's share price may fall dramatically. Investments in foreign securities, particularly those of issuers located in emerging markets, tend to have greater exposure to liquidity risk than domestic securities.
Investors should consider the investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses of the fund carefully before investing. Download a prospectus, or a summary prospectus, if available, that contains this and other information about the fund, and read it carefully before investing.