Mutual Funds: Most Popular Articles
Finding the best S&P 500 Index funds can be easy if you know what to look for. Here are a few of the top S&P 500 Index funds and why we recommend them.
Which are the best no-load mutual fund families? Today's do-it-yourself investor has the tools available to build a diverse investment portfolio at one company or online discount broker. Find out where, why and how to find simplicity, low-cost and high quality all in one place.
What is a mutual fund? In one simple explanation, learn the definition, basics, advantages and types of mutual funds.
Mutual Funds 101 is the basics at its best and easiest; this is investing for dummies; and this is so easy a caveman can do it!
Dave Ramsey gets a few things right on mutual funds but several things wrong. Mutual fund investors can get some good tips from his talk radio show but they are wise to understand the difference between entertainment and sound investment practices.
Each year, generally in the last couple of months of the year, mutual fund shareholders face the possibility of receiving capital gains distributions from their mutual funds. Don’t be fooled by the capital gains distributions. These are not gains of the good sort.
Which investment strategy is best - value or growth? Are index funds better than both value and growth? Take a look at this historical data and review the performance charts for yourself and make an informed decision on the value vs growth vs index debate.
Whether you want to invest a 401(k) or IRA rollover, a tax refund, an inheritance, or you win the lottery, there are a few smart ways to best manage a large amount of cash, no matter what the stock market or economy is doing at the time.
To build the best portfolio of mutual funds you must go beyond the sage advice,
What are dividends and how are mutual fund investors taxed on dividends? Understanding the basics of dividends and mutual fund taxation is essential to investing success.
Which are the best bond mutual funds in a rising interest rate environment? Which bond funds do better against inflation? Knowing the basics on which funds perform best and which funds perform worst before and during higher interest rates and inflation is a crucial skill for the bond mutual fund investor.
Dividend mutual funds - stock mutual funds that primarily invest in companies that pay dividends - profits that companies share with stock shareholders.
For an example of how to build an aggressive portfolio of mutual funds, take a look at this model allocation with helpful percentage suggestions.
Before you invest, you should do your homework. Will you choose to use mutual funds, closed-end funds, ETFs, and/or individual stocks and bonds? Inevitably, your homework assignment will lead you to articles outlining the disadvantages of mutual funds. But are all of these so-called disadvantages of mutual funds really disadvantages of mutual funds? Let’s take a look at several so-called disadvantages of mutual funds,and how you can avoid them.
Index funds are mutual funds that are intended to track the returns of a market index. Index funds are considered to be passively managed because the portfolio manager of each index fund is replicating the index, rather than trading securities based on his or her view of the potential risk/reward characteristics of various securities. In recent years, more obscure indexes have been created.
Why do index funds outperform actively-managed funds? Over long periods of time, index funds have higher returns than their actively-managed counterparts for several simple reasons.
Mutual fund research can be made easier with a good online research tool. Whether you are a beginner or a pro, these sites are among the best.
Choosing the best mutual funds can be easy. Learn how to find and choose the best ones for you with these simple and proven methods.
While there are a plethora of options, a mutual fund can offer a simple, efficient way to invest for retirement, education or other financial goals.
How do I reduce taxes on mutual funds? Understanding mutual fund taxation will help you improve your overall returns by being a smarter investor.
Dave Ramsey means well but his mutual fund investment philosophy is potentially dangerous for investors. Find out what Dave gets wrong and how to be sure you are not making his mistakes. Page 2.
An overview of the myriad of choices, whether to seek advice, where to buy, how much it is going to cost you.
As a popular investment option, you have probably already heard plenty about mutual funds. Chances are you own mutual funds in your retirement plan or brokerage account. In fact, according to the Investment Company Institute, more than 92 million individuals in the U.S. (about 45% of U.S. households) owned mutual funds in 2008. But do you know what mutual funds are and why so many people own them?
Should you invest in no-load funds or load funds? Which is best and what is the difference?
There are various classes of shares of each mutual fund available for purchase (a mutual fund may offer various classes of shares to investors -- the differences are in the fees and expenses of each share class). Several common share classes are: Class A, Class B and Class C. Each share class requires a management and operating fee and many share classes charge a 12b-1 fee.
Past performance of a mutual fund may not be a guarantee of future results but if you know how to analyze performance--if you know what to look for and what to avoid--you can make better investment decisions.
What are the best mutual funds for retirement planning and savings? Are some fund types better than others? What about taxation? Learn the best investment strategies, such as how to invest with fixed-income, dividend-paying mutual funds, and ETFs, while maintaining principal before and during your golden years.
For an example of how to build an moderate portfolio of mutual funds, take a look at this model allocation with percentages.
There are hundreds of fund families to choose from but there are only a few that offer investors a wide variety of high quality no-load funds. Find out which fund families are the best for no-load funds.
While cheaper doesn't necessarily mean better, you will find some of the cheapest S&P 500 funds that you can buy with $10,000 or less listed below.
Understanding how bond mutual funds work can help investors understand other areas of finance and economics such as stock investing and interest rates.
How many times have we been told that there is no free lunch? The same holds true with no-load mutual funds. No-load mutual funds are free of sales charges (loads), but they do have costs. All share classes of funds -- load or no load -- carry fees that are paid out of the fund’s assets to the fund’s investment advisors (as opposed to paying the advisor/broker who sells the fund).
Learning how mutual funds are categorized helps an investor choose the best funds for asset allocation and diversification purposes.
Before you build a portfolio of mutual funds, learn some of the basic tips for investing and planning your strategy.
It's never too early or too late to review the basics of investing with mutual funds. Check out this easy list to get started or to get back on track.
There is more to analyzing a mutual fund than reviewing past performance. In fact, the best predictors of future performance include factors many overlook.
With so many different types of investing strategies, styles, theories and tactics, an investor can find themselves under the spell of analysis paralysis. Which investment strategy is best for you?
What are the top 10 best mutual funds of all time? Check out this list and learn how to find the best funds for your own portfolio.
To get started investing with mutual funds, you will need to know the basics. Learn how by understanding mutual fund types, taxation and how to buy.
Market timing can be challenging but there are some moves investors can make to invest in stocks and sectors in a rising interest rate environment.
What are the different types of mutual fund share classes and what are their basic advantages or disadvantages? Which shares are best?
Choosing the best mutual funds for beginners is not a matter of finding the best performers of the day. Instead, beginners are wise to know their investment objectives and future plans and prepare for a long-term strategy. Therefore, assuming you want to do it yourself, it is wise to know which mutual fund companies have the best variety of low-cost, no-load funds.
Target-date funds are often thought of as “set it and forget it” funds. For example if you plan to retire in 20 years, you might buy a target-date fund that matches your time-frame -- a target of 20 years. As you approach your retirement date, the fund moves its allocation to more conservative mutual fund investments (holding bonds and cash) and away from riskier mutual funds investments (holding equities).
Gold can be used as a hedge against inflation and a falling US dollar, but what's the best way to invest in this precious metal and commodity?
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Before you buy
What are the best sectors for 2014? Find out what areas of the market can perform well and help build a diversified portfolio in 2014.
Is the 4 percent rule still valid? This general rule of thumb for retirement income can be a good place to start your planning but the strategy can be misleading, especially if you do not know how to use it correctly.
TIPS are bonds that pay a coupon on the adjusted principal of the bond. They're adjusted on a semi-annual basis with the rate of the Consumer Price Index.
Closed-end funds are often confused with, and mistakenly called, mutual funds. A major difference is that closed-end funds behave more like a stock -- the market value is driven by supply and demand for the shares. Perhaps the best way to understand a closed-end fund is to compare it with an open-end mutual fund.
Should you invest in R Share mutual funds? Before investing, be sure to understand how the different share classes charge fees and expenses.
Which are the best index funds and what do you analyze to choose them? Why are index funds better than actively-managed funds? Are passive mutual funds better than ETFs?
much? To be properly diversified, to obtain reasonable returns while minimizing risk, pay close attention to the 5 Percent Rule of Investment Allocation.
What is a mutual fund's total net assets under management and why is helpful to analyze this for best investment practices? How much is too much?
For an example of how to build an conservative portfolio of mutual funds, take a look at this model allocation.
Small-Cap stocks can make up a significant portion of your investment portfolio at any time. But when is the best time to invest in small-cap stocks?
The growth and income objective for mutual funds is a combination of one part growth and one part income. Learn more with this simple overview.
Should you invest in D Share mutual funds? Before investing, be sure to understand how the different share classes charge fees and expenses.
What is Aggressive Growth are what are some mutual fund examples? Aggressive Growth is a mutual fund objective that is so broad, an investor can easily make a mistake when building an investment portfolio. Therefore, the Dave Ramsey mutual fund portfolio example can be misleading advice.
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Definition: Core
Diversification with mutual funds is more than just putting your eggs into different baskets. Find out how to properly diversify with mutual funds.
Mutual funds must comply with a strict set of rules that are monitored by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Find basic information and links here.
The fundamental question is this: Do you want to hire yourself as the advisor or someone else? Follow these helpful tips to measure your personal needs.
Can you lose money with bond mutual funds? Find out how bonds can depreciate in value by reading the basics and how to invest in different environments.
Looking for how to invest in 2014 with mutual funds and ETFs? Take a look at this guide for simple ideas and examples.
The evidence shows that there are good active managers, but finding such managers in advance of their outperformance is difficult. According to Vanguard, for the 10 years leading up to 2007, the majority of actively-managed U.S. stock funds underperformed the index they were seeking to outperform.
Whether you use an advisor or you do it yourself, you might enjoy a few sites to help you research mutual funds. Follow the 6 links for helpful advice.
Retirement income mutual funds can be a simple investment choice for those investors already in or entering retirement. See some of the best retirement income funds and find out if they are a good fit for your needs.
Which is best, index funds or ETFs? What are the differences? What are the advantages and disadvantages? Find out who should invest and learn how to choose the best passive investments and strategies.
Rebalancing your investment portfolio is the best way to 'buy low and sell high.' All you need to do is learn the best strategies.
How to invest in fixed income for 2014 can be challenging in a rising interest rate environment. Here a few good ideas for bond mutual funds.
Statistical analysis of mutual funds requires a fundamental knowledge of quantitative measures. Learn more here and you can choose the best mutual funds.
What are total stock market index funds? Find out how to use total stock market index funds, which ones are the best and if you should use them.
Before you research how and where to invest in 2014, be sure to find an asset allocation strategy that works best for your investment objectives.
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Who is Vanguard?
The portfolio manager of an actively-managed fund tries to beat the market by picking and choosing investments.
Fixed income funds are an excellent diversification tool for investors’ portfolios. Start with these five basic types of fixed income funds.
To understand the structure of mutual funds, compare other “40 Act Funds” – investment companies registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940.
Inflation erodes at the value of money and can be an investor's worst enemy. Learn how to beat inflation by investing in mutual funds.
The S&P 500 Index is a benchmark for the large cap segment of the US equity market. The index includes 500 US-based companies and covers approximately 75% of the US equity market.
Learn how and where to use tax-efficient mutual funds, and make sure to understand and apply the basic concepts of tax-efficient investing.
Why invest in index funds? Learn about index funds and find out the primary reasons why index funds often outperform most actively-managed funds in the long run.
Learn more about long-term investments here with examples, strategies, and analysis on how to become a successful long-term investor.
Gauging your risk tolerance is a good way to help you determine how much risk you can tolerate in your portfolio of investments.
While most people are painfully aware of short-term capital gains, short-term capital gains distributions are often a misunderstood -- and always a dreaded -- aspect of mutual fund investing. Financial advisors, sophisticated investors and novices alike, forget the rules of the unpleasant feature of mutual funds we know as short-term capital gains distributions.
There are recent criticisms and variations of style to consider before applying MPT to your own investment portfolio. Read about some examples here.
A fee that is charged by some mutual funds, which is used to pay marketing, distribution, and service costs, and is paid to the broker. The Financial Industry Regulation Authority (FINRA) allows funds to charge as much as 1.00% annually as a 12b-1 fee.
There are a few key things every investor should know about mutual funds. Be prepared by knowing the risks, options, and expenses laid out here.
What are the 6 steps of financial planning? Find out the best way to plan for your financial goals and the steps advisers take in their planning process.
Are there certain areas of the market that are more or less efficient than others? How can you use index funds to take advantage of EMH?
Arriving at how or where to invest in 2014 depends upon your investment objectives, economic and market outlook, and investing tactics.
If you are looking for a good list of sectors and the best mutual funds and ETFs for each, here is a great guide for learning the basics and for investment strategy.
You may have heard about index funds. But what is an index? What are examples of best known indexes?
Want to know how to build the best lazy portfolio? Start with these timeless and tested investing strategies. Set it and forget it!
When is the best time to use bonds versus bond funds? Find out here by learning about basics, differences, when to buy which, and more.
Morningstar is best known as a mutual funds research company. But what exactly do they do?
Which is best, a total stock market index or the S&P 500 Index? It depends upon the complimentary mutual funds or ETFs within the investor's portfolio.
As with all investment strategies and financial plans, there are wise steps you can take to find success without taking unreasonable risk.
Unit investment trusts (UITs) may be the least understood, and certainly least utilized, of all of the US registered investment companies.
R-squared (R2) is a statistical measure that investors can use to determine a particular investment's correlation with a given benchmark.
Learn more in this discussion about turnover ratio, how to produce higher average returns, and become a better mutual fund investor.
When you hear the term, investment objective, what does it mean and how can you go about forming an investment objective for yourself? What are some examples?
The percentage of fees paid to the mutual fund company to manage and operate the fund, including all administrative expenses and 12b-1 fees. The expense ratio excludes sales charges.
What should you analyze when doing your mutual fund research and which things should you not analyze? Here's all you need to know (and a few things you can ignore).
If you need to know how to buy mutual funds that are best for you, the process does not need to be complex. Buying mutual funds can be simple and profitable if you follow a few basic steps.
Fixed income can refer to an investment strategy or style that is intended to produce relatively fixed or stable income or it can also refer to investment types within an investment portfolio.
Need a list of the major market indexes? Check this list for a quick and easy reference for investing in the major stock and bond indices.
A correction is a market trend that all active investors should know how to recognize. It is important to understand the distinction between a correction and a bear market.
When investing in silver, Exchange-Traded Funds (ETF) or Exchange-Traded Notes (ETN), it's important to know the risk and nature of commodity investing.
A mutual fund investor can use beta in planning their fund selection to determine volatility of the fund and to compare its sensitivity in movement to the overall market.
You may hear that mutual fund B shares are a good buy. But more and more mutual fund companies are saying “goodbye” to mutual fund B shares.
Tactical asset allocation with mutual funds and Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) can be an effective middle ground of investing between the extremes of market timing and passive investing.
What is fixed income? How do bond mutual funds work? Investing in bonds can be risky if you are not aware of the basics.
Need some mutual fund portfolio examples? Here are a few basic and simple portfolios for 3 types of investors - aggressive, moderate or conservative.
Index funds are considered to be passively managed funds. The manager of an index fund tries to mimic the returns of the index it follows by purchasing all -- or almost all -- of the holdings in the index. Hundreds of market indexes can be invested in via mutual funds and exchange-traded funds.
Class A shares generally have front-end sales charges (also known as a âloadâ).This is paid to the advisor for buying the mutual fund on behalf of investors.
A money market fund offers similar protection as the mattress, but offers the benefit of paying a yield on your money.
Finding where to invest your fixed income savings in 2013 can be challenging. Learn the best investment and savings ideas for bonds, mutual funds, money markets and CD's.
What is the Standard & Poor's Midcap 400? You've probably heard of the S&P 500 Index but you may not be familiar its mid-cap cousin, the S&P Midcap 400. Learn more about this often overlooked segment of the market and improve your portfolio's diversity and possibly its returns.
What are growth stocks? Which mutual funds are best for exposure to growth stocks? What is the best timing for investing? Mutual funds are an ideal means of investing in growth stocks for the average investor. Advanced investors can also use them as tools in their portfolios.
Interest rate risk is the risk of falling bond prices due to the rise in interest rates. Find examples and related terms here.
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >Definition: Buy
Asset allocation describes how investment assets are dividend into the 3 basic investment types - stocks, bonds and cash - within an investment portfolio.
NAV is an acronym for Net Asset Value. The NAV of a fund is the total value of the securities in the fund minus liabilities, divided by shares outstanding.
When an investor buys a mutual fund, their investment dollars are used to purchase new shares of the mutual fund. Learn more information here.
The Barclays Capital Aggregate Bond Index is the benchmark for most bond funds traded in the US. How can an investor benefit using a total bond market fund?
Standard deviation of historical mutual fund performance is used by investors in an attempt to predict a range of returns for various mutual funds.
: ETF is short for "Exchange-Traded Fund." An ETF holds a basket of securities and trades on a stock
How does the Ex-Dividend date for stocks work? When are the best and worst times to buy stocks in relation to dividend dates?
A sector fund is a mutual fund or exchange-traded fund that concentrates its investments in a single sector of the market. If you invest in individual stocks and you’re uncomfortable investing in stocks within a particular sector, then you may benefit from sector funds. You can diversify your portfolio by adding the neglected sector via a sector fund.
Be sure to understand the definition, nature and risks of high yield investing, which can make a good addition to your mutual fund investment portfolio.
Should you invest in C Share mutual funds? Before investing, be sure to understand how the different share classes charge fees and expenses.
What is a lump sum distribution? What is the best way to invest the cash from a 401(k) or IRA rollover? Find out what to do when you are given distribution options from your retirement accounts.
A lack of understanding of inflation can be detrimental to an investor's portfolio. Learn how to invest & hedge against inflationary economic environments.
Despite the similarities of closed-end funds (CEFs) and mutual funds, they are two distinct types of investment companies.
John Hollyer, co-manager of Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities, outlines why deflation is a risk of investing in TIPS. Page 3.
class="no-js" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Article" > itemprop="description" >When you hear
What are the types of bond funds? How are bond mutual funds categorized? Which bond funds are the best for you?
As part of an interview with John Hollyer, co-manager of the Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities Fund, I asked, “What are the primary risks of investing in TIPS?” Whether you are a professional advisor or individual investing, John's answer will be helpful. Page 2.
Follow these four helpful pieces of advice to see why you should (or shouldn't) sell your mutual fund. Consider your personal goals and market changes.
A mutual fund prospectus is to a mutual fund what an owner’s manual is to a car. If you want to learn more about what’s under the hood of your mutual fund, check out the prospectus. The mutual fund prospectus is a valuable tool that contains important information.
What are the best target date retirement funds and how are they used? Should you invest in target date mutual funds?
What are defensive sectors and how can an investor use them for best investing strategies?
So you have heard a lot of talk about municipal bond funds and do the research to find a fund for you. But your research suggests that the yields of these municipal bond funds are less than many of their bond fund counterparts. So, why would you want to buy a municipal bond fund if you can buy another bond fund that has a higher yield?
What are inst funds? Are they the same as class I mutual funds? Can individual investors invest in institutional funds?
Do you have questions about index investing? The answers to what you want to know (and what you never thought to ask) about how to invest with index funds are all here.
As part of an interview with John Hollyer, co-manager of the Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities Fund, I asked, “What are the primary risks of investing in TIPS?” Whether you are a professional advisor or individual investing, John's answer will be helpful.
US Treasury bonds are debt obligations of the US Federal Government issued by the US Treasury. Understanding the definition and basics of US Treasury bonds and US Treasury bond mutual funds can help an investor build a better portfolio.
What is deflation? Learn how to invest and hedge against deflationary economic environments.
What is the Dow Jones Industrial Average and why should investors care about it? Although this index only represents 30 large industrial companies, the Dow Jones index still has significant relevance.
What do I do with my 1099? Do I have to file it with my taxes? Does the IRS need a copy? Why did I receive a 1099? There are more than a dozen different types of 1099 forms but the most common 1099 forms are generated from investing activities, such as dividends, capital gains and IRA and 401(k) distributions and rollovers.