Articles (18)

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  • Brian Schroeder

    Benchmark Linking: What Plan Sponsors Should Know

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    by Brian Schroeder — Friday, July 1, 2016

    Believe it or not, many plan sponsors of institutional investment plans do not have a reliable benchmark to judge their total performance over time.  How can this be?  What could be more fundamental than the ability to accurately evaluate investment results? Although ...Read More

  • Tom Allen and Mark Hebner

    Part 2: Fidelity Funds - A Deeper Look at the Performance

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    by Tom Allen and Mark Hebner — Friday, August 21, 2015

    We recently wrote an article that gave a high level overview of the performance of 64 different equity funds from Fidelity Investments. Our goal was to inform investors to be very careful when they hear “rumors” in the financial media about superior fund families. ...Read More

  • Large Cap Active Managers on Track for Record Low Performance

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    by Mark Hebner and IFA Contributors — Wednesday, December 3, 2014

    As we were enjoying our Thanksgiving Day weekend, this Jason Zweig column in the Wall Street Journal caught our attention.  Zweig quotes Denys Glushkov, a senior researcher at Wharton Research Data Services at the University of Pennsylvania, as saying that only 9.3% of ...Read More

  • Will "Go-Anywhere Funds" Get You to Your Destination?

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    by Mark Hebner — Monday, April 14, 2014

    When discussing the issue of style drift with prospective clients, we commonly hear an objection that goes something like, “Why should I care where my fund manager chooses to invest, as long as he is picking the asset class and securities with the highest returns?” ...Read More

  • Tactical Asset Allocation: The Market-Timing Wolf in Sheep's Clothing

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    by IFA Contributors — Wednesday, January 1, 2014

    Borrowing the definition from a recent Vanguard study, "Tactical asset allocation (TAA) is a dynamic strategy that actively adjusts a portfolio's strategic asset allocation (SAA) based on short-term market forecasts. Its objective is to systematically exploit inefficiencies or ...Read More

  • Style Drift on Steroids

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    by IFA Contributors — Tuesday, May 7, 2013

    In Step 6 of IFA’s 12-Step Recovery Program for Active Investors, we analyze the problem of style drift, the tendency of active managers to buy securities outside of their mandate. Normally, style drift refers to something like a value fund that dabbles in growth stocks or ...Read More

  • When Two Minuses Do Not Make a Plus

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    by IFA Contributors — Tuesday, October 23, 2012

    As a registered investment advisor, Index Funds Advisors, Inc. is constantly solicited by mutual fund companies and ETF (exchange-traded fund) providers hoping to convince us to use their products for our client’s portfolios. Recently, we were invited to a Webinar on an ...Read More

  • The Turn of the Tide

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    by Mark Hebner — Thursday, September 8, 2011

    Is there change on the horizon? A recent article in Bloomberg Businessweek by Charles Stein details the disenchantment investors are experiencing with stock pickers. Mutual funds that invest in domestic equities have experienced a mass exodus of around $8 billion in redemptions ...Read More

  • Breaking Down the Style ETFs

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    by IndexFunds.com Staff — Monday, June 23, 2003

    Investors who use index-linked exchange-traded funds to slice and dice various parts of the U.S. market can choose from benchmarks from Russell, S&P/Barra, and Dow Jones. ...Read More

  • Will McClatchy

    Index Tracking is a Secondary Goal

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    by Will McClatchy — Sunday, December 23, 2001

    As investors examine year-end performances of their index funds, one measure they should not focus on too closely is tracking error. Keeping a portfolio reasonably close to its intended index is desirable, but experts caution against zealous efforts to ...Read More

  • Comparing Mutual Funds to Different Benchmarks

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    by IndexFunds.com Staff — Friday, January 19, 2001

    What a difference two years can make. In 1999, only 33% of mutual funds were able to beat Standard & Poor's (S&P) 500. In the year 2000, over 72% of all mutual funds managed that task. Nearly half of all funds managed to outgain the S&P 600 Small Cap ...Read More

  • Random Drift and Asset Allocation

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    by David Booth — Thursday, July 1, 1999

    A doubling of the price-earnings ratio occurs when r-g is cut in half. If r-g is 6%, then the P/E ratio for a stock or index is 16.7. If r-g is 3%, then the P/E ratio is ...Read More

  • Style Drift Illustrated

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    by IndexFunds.com Staff — Friday, January 1, 1999

    Actively-managed funds often start out as one kind of animal and slowly evolve into something totally different over time. For investors who care about developing asset class portfolios with funds that stay true to their style, this "style drift" is an ...Read More