By Jeff Cox, CNBC.com Senior Writer NEW YORK ( CNBC) -- An extended period of "financial repression"--brought on by low interest rates--means investors will have to do what they can to get income while keeping up a strong defense against global slowness, Pimco's Mohamed El-Erian told CNBC Monday. Portfolios should include a healthy mix of stocks, fixed income and foreign exchange currencies that keep investors exposed to growing parts of the world and protected against debt-burdened areas that won't do as well, the co-CEO at the world's largest bond fund said in a live interview. If you look at the advanced economies, the US is the cleanest dirty shirt. It is not purely clean, but it is cleaner than what you see in Europe, than what you see in Japan," El-Erian said.
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While U.S. stocks are in a bull-market rally, other markets around the world have done even better. Russia, for instance, has gained 23% this year, while India stocks have risen 26% and the German market is up 18%. Investors need to identify those growth markets and find companies that have exposure there both on the debt and equity side, El-Erian added. "You want a solid balance sheet. We are still going to go through many years of (debt reduction) and you have to have that balance sheet defense," he said. "You want offense on one side, and defense, and you can combine them both in quite a few companies both here and around the world." --Written by Jeff Cox at CNBC.