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John Hancock Funds III

Filed: 6 Jan 20, 7:00pm

John Hancock Group of Funds
200 Berkeley Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02116

January 6, 2020

VIA EDGAR

Division of Investment Management
Securities and Exchange Commission
100 F Street, N.E.
Washington, D.C. 02549
Attention: Jeff Long

Re:John Hancock Funds III Form N-CSR Annual Reports to Shareholders (“Form N-CSR”) for the Period Ended March 31, 2019 and Form N-1A Registration Statement (“Form N-1A”) effective August 1, 2019; File No. 811-21777
  
John Hancock Current Interest N-CSR for the Period Ended March 31, 2019 and Form N-1A effective August 1, 2019, File No. 811-02485
 
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund Trust N-CSR for the Period Ended April 30, 2019 and Form N-1A effective September 1, 2019, File No. 811-22733
 
John Hancock Strategic Series Form N-CSR for the Period Ended May 31, 2019 and Form N-1A effective October 1, 2019; File No. 811-04651
 
John Hancock Municipal Securities Trust N-CSR for the Period Ended May 31, 2019 and Form N-1A effective October 1, 2019, File No. 811-05968
 
John Hancock Bond Trust N-CSR for the Period Ended May 31, 2019 and Form N-1A effective October 1, 2019, File No. 811-03006
 
John Hancock Sovereign Bond Fund N-CSR for the Period Ended May 31, 2019 and Form N-1A effective October 1, 2019, File No. 811-02402
 
John Hancock California Tax-Free Income Fund N-CSR Filing for the Period Ended May 31, 2019 and Form N-1A effective October 1, 2019, File No. 811-05979
 
John Hancock Funds II Form N-CSR for the Periods Ended July 31, 2019 and August 31, 2019 and Form N-1A effective December 1, 2019 and January 1, 2019; File No. 811-21779

Dear Mr. Long:

This letter responds to the comments of the Staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), which were conveyed to us by telephone on December 2, 2019 with respect to the filings on Form N-CSR and Form N-1A for the John Hancock Funds listed on Annex A, attached hereto. The Staff’s comments are set forth below, each followed by the respective fund’s response.

1.Comment:The following funds had significant investments that reference LIBOR rates: John Hancock Funds II Short Duration Credit Opportunities, John Hancock Funds II Floating Rate Income Fund, John Hancock Funds II High Yield Fund, and John Hancock Bond Trust High Yield Fund.


Securities and Exchange Commission
January 6, 2020
Page 2 of 7

   Should the discontinuation of LIBOR be listed as a principal risk in the prospectus for the applicable funds?

Response:We plan to include risk disclosure related to the discontinuation of LIBOR for relevant funds beginning with our January 1, 2020 prospectus updates.

2.Comment:For John Hancock Funds II Income Allocation Fund, the prospectus effective January 1, 2019 reflects the same expenses for Management fee, Rule 12b-1 fees, Other expenses, and Acquired fund fees and expenses in the fee table for Class I and Class R6 but “Total annual fund operating expenses” differ.

Response:The total gross and total net operating expense ratios are correct; however for Class R6 “Other Expenses” had a typographical error and was overstated. Other expense ratio of 1.65% should have been 1.55%. The annual prospectus update for the fund will be effective January 1, 2020.

3.Comment:The investment objective for John Hancock Funds II Disciplined Value Alternative Yield Fund involves a covered call option strategy. Please consider also stating that with this strategy the fund may give up the right to benefit from potential price increases.

Response:We will include this risk disclosure in the annual prospectus update.

4.Comment:John Hancock Funds II Global Absolute Return Strategies Fund has significant investments in derivatives; however theDiscussion of fund performancedoes not discuss the impact of investing in derivatives.

Response:The impact on results for each of the strategies discussed in theDiscussion of fund performanceis inclusive of any derivatives included within that strategy. For example, the Canadian interest rates strategy discussed as having a positive impact on performance is inclusive of both long portfolio positions and derivatives which make up that specific investment strategy. In the future, we will explicitly state that the discussion includes the effect of the derivatives utilized to meet the specific strategy being implemented, when applicable.

5.Comment:TheOther liabilities and accrued expensesamount on theStatement of Assets and Liabilitiesfor Multifactor Consumer Staples ETF and Multifactor Utilities ETF appears to be significant. Are there any material liabilities or expenses that should broken out?

Response:The balance for each of the funds is comprised of third-party fund accounting and custody expenses, audit expense, printing expense, and other miscellaneous expenses. We do not consider any of these balances to be individually material to the fund or requiring a separate line item on theStatement of Assets and Liabilities.

6.Comment:The portfolio for John Hancock Funds II Emerging Markets Debt Fund reflects a maturity date of 6-5-15 for Petrobras Global Finance BV. Is this bond defaulted?

Response:The maturity date for this security is June 5, 2115.

7.Comment:Does John Hancock Funds II Floating Rate Income Fund hold any covenant lite term loans, and if so, is the risk of investing in these types of loans adequately disclosed in the prospectus?

Response:We will include this risk disclosure in the annual prospectus update.


Securities and Exchange Commission
January 6, 2020
Page 3 of 7

8.Comment:Several funds include an Investments in affiliates table. The beginning amount, acquisitions, disposals, and ending amount should be based on value and not shares.

Response:We are in process of updating the presentation of this table to confirm with the updated guidance. This update will be presented beginning with our November 30, 2019 N-CSR filing.

The Staff has requested that the funds provide the following representations in their response to the Staff’s comments:

The funds listed in Annex A each acknowledges that:

1.It is responsible for the adequacy and accuracy of the disclosure in its Form N-CSR filings;
  
2.Staff comments or changes to disclosure in response to Staff comments in the filings reviewed by the Staff do not foreclose the SEC from taking any action with respect to filings on Form N-CSR; and
  
3.It may not assert Staff comments as a defense in any proceeding initiated by the SEC or any person under the federal securities laws of the United States.

*          *          *

We hope that these foregoing responses adequately address the Staff’s comments. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at (617) 663-4497.

Sincerely,

/s/ Salvatore Schiavone
Salvatore Schiavone
Treasurer
John Hancock Group of Funds


Securities and Exchange Commission
January 6, 2020
Page 4 of 7

Annex A

Trust NameFund NameSEC File
Number
FYE
John Hancock Current InterestMoney Market Fund811-024853/31
John Hancock Funds IIIDisciplined Value Fund811-217773/31
John Hancock Funds IIIDisciplined Value Mid Cap Fund811-217773/31
John Hancock Funds IIIGlobal Shareholder Yield Fund811-217773/31
John Hancock Funds IIIInternational Growth Fund811-217773/31
John Hancock Funds IIIU.S. Quality Growth Fund811-217773/31
John Hancock Investment TrustDiversified Real Assets Fund811-005603/31
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Consumer Discretionary ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Consumer Staples ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Developed International ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Emerging Markets ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Energy ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Financials ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Healthcare ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Industrials ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Large Cap ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Materials ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Media and Communications ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Mid Cap ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Small Cap ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Technology ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Exchange-Traded Fund TrustJohn Hancock Multifactor Utilities ETF811-227334/30
John Hancock Bond TrustESG Core Bond Fund811-030065/31
John Hancock Bond TrustGovernment Income Fund811-030065/31
John Hancock Bond TrustHigh Yield Fund811-030065/31
John Hancock Bond TrustInvestment Grade Bond Fund811-030065/31
John Hancock California Tax-Free Income FundCalifornia Tax-Free Income Fund811-059795/31
John Hancock Municipal Securities TrustHigh Yield Municipal Bond Fund811-059685/31
John Hancock Municipal Securities TrustTax-Free Bond Fund811-059685/31
John Hancock Sovereign Bond FundBond Fund811-024025/31


Securities and Exchange Commission
January 6, 2020
Page 5 of 7

John Hancock Strategic SeriesIncome Fund811-046515/31
John Hancock Funds IIAbsolute Return Currency Fund811-217797/31
John Hancock Funds IIDiversified Strategies Fund811-217797/31
John Hancock Funds IIFundamental All Cap Core Fund811-217797/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Asset Absolute Return Fund (formerly, Global Absolute Return Strategies Fund)811-217797/31
John Hancock Funds IIShort Duration Credit Opportunities Fund811-217797/31
John Hancock Funds IIAlternative Asset Allocation Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIAsia Pacific Total Return Bond Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIBlue Chip Growth Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IICapital Appreciation Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IICapital Appreciation Value Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IICore Bond Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIDisciplined Alternative Yield Fund (formerly Redwood Fund)811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIEmerging Markets Debt Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIEmerging Markets Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIEquity Income Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIFloating Rate Income Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIFundamental Global Franchise Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIGlobal Bond Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIGlobal Equity Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIHealth Sciences Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIHigh Yield Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIIncome Allocation Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIInternational Growth Stock Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIInternational Small Company Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIInternational Small Cap Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIInternational Strategic Equity Allocation Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIInternational Value Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMid Cap Stock Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMid Value Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2010 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2015 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2020 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2020 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2025 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2025 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2030 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2030 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31


Securities and Exchange Commission
January 6, 2020
Page 6 of 7

John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2035 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2035 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2040 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2040 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2045 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2045 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2050 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2050 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2055 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2055 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2060 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index 2060 Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index Income Preservation Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index Lifestyle Aggressive Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index Lifestyle Balanced Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index Lifestyle Conservative Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index Lifestyle Growth Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMulti-Index Lifestyle Moderate Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2010 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2015 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2020 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2025 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2030 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2035 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2040 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2045 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2050 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2055 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIMultimanager 2060 Lifetime Portfolio811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IINew Opportunities Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIReal Return Bond811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIReal Estate Securities Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIScience & Technology Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IISmall Cap Growth Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IISmall Cap Value Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IISmall Company Value Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IISpectrum Income Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIStrategic Equity Allocation Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIStrategic Income Opportunities Fund811-217798/31


Securities and Exchange Commission
January 6, 2020
Page 7 of 7

John Hancock Funds IIU.S. High Yield Bond Fund811-217798/31
John Hancock Funds IIU.S. Strategic Equity Allocation Fund811-217798/31