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- U.S. equities and international equities both saw gains this week.
- The best-performing fund so far for 2017 continues to be the Neuberger Berman Greater China Eq Instl (NCEIX).
- Latin America Equities is the best-performing mutual fund subcategory based on the rolling month.
- Make sure to check out the previous edition of the Weekly Roundup to keep track of changing trends in the mutual funds space.
U.S. Equities – U.S. equity markets all gained this week, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average increasing 0.80% to close at 21,988. The S&P 500 had an increase of 1.37% for the week, closing at 2,477. The NASDAQ Composite Index had the biggest increase among the major indices and was up 2.71% to close at 6,435. The NASDAQ is the best-performing major index on a year-to-date basis, up 19.55%.
The healthcare sector was this week’s top-performing area, up 2.98%. The sector is composed of healthcare and pharmaceutical giants like Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) and UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH), which were up 1.71% and 2.77% for the week, respectively.
Explore our Mutual Fund Education section to learn more about important mutual fund concepts.
International Equities – International markets mostly showed positive movements. The MSCI Developed Index increased of 0.57% to close at 1,938. The MSCI Emerging Index had an increase of 0.65% for the week and remains the best-performing index on a year-to-date basis, up 29.06%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 finally saw a gain, up 1.23% to close at 19,691.
Commodities – The commodity sector saw gains except for crude oil, which declined $0.58 per barrel and closed at $47.29 per barrel. The price of gold increased $32 per troy ounce to close at $1,325. Copper was also up for the week, increasing by $0.08 to close at $3.12.
Be sure to read our important tips on how to invest in the right commodity-based mutual fund.
Taxable Bonds – Treasury yields gained this week, except for the 10-year Treasury. The 2-year Treasury gained 1 bps to yield 1.34%. The 10-year Treasury yield remained flat, while the 30-year Treasury yield increased 3 bps to 2.78%.
Municipal Bonds – Municipal yields fell across all maturities this week, with the exception of the 30-year AAA-rated bonds. The 2-year AAA-rated bonds decreased 2 bps to yield 0.85%. The 10-year AAA-rated bonds declined 2 bps, while the 30-year AAA-rated bond saw no change and still yields 2.75%. Municipal bond funds saw inflows of $243 million, after last week’s large outflow of $763 million. The largest credit spread among Treasury and muni bonds remains at 61 bps for the 5-year securities.
Performance Snapshot: Top Fund Category
The following table provides a list of the top-performing mutual fund subcategories for the previous week within the broader categories of the industry. In each of these subcategories, we have listed the top mutual funds based on the 1-month return generated as of September 1, 2017.
|Category||Top Subcategory||1-Month Subcategory Return (%)||Top Subcategory Performer||Ticker||1-Month Fund Return (%)||Performance Rationale|
U.S. Equity Fund
|Large Cap Growth||0.97%||Kinetics Internet No Load||WWWFX||6.88%||The fund has over 18% in technology, which is the #1 performing sector this year.|
|Latin America Equities||6.60%||Deutsche Latin America Equity S||SLAFX||8.19%||The fund invests in Latin American companies such as its largest holding, Raia Drogasil SA (BVMF:RADL3), which is up over 18% YTD.|
|Broad Basket||1.95%||DoubleLine Strategic Commodity I||DBCMX||4.42%||With oil continuing to fall this week, the fund was protected by being heavily invested in over 79% cash.|
|Emerging Markets Bonds||1.97%||Guinness Atkinson Renminbi Yuan & Bond||GARBX||2.84%||The fund invests in Chinese bonds, which gained value this week.|
|High Yield Muni||0.99%||Lord Abbett High Yield Municipal Bond I||HYMIX||1.62%||With muni bonds yields decreasing, high-yield bonds saw the largest gains in price.|
Performance Snapshot: Top Fund
The fund’s largest holding is in Tencent Holdings Ltd (HKG:0700), which is up over 69% on a year-to-date basis and around 3.4% for the trailing one month.
The following table provides the top-performing mutual funds on a YTD basis as of September 1, 2017. Only those funds that are rated five stars by Morningstar and that generated YTD returns greater than or equal to that achieved by the S&P 500 are included.
|Top-Performing Fund||Ticker||Category||YTD Return (%)||Net Expense Ratio (%)||% of Assets in Top 10 Holdings||Net Assets ($ Millions)||Top Sector Invested|
Neuberger Berman Greater China Eq Instl
|NCEIX||China Equities||47.21%||1.76%||50.10%||$121||Financial Services|
Morgan Stanley Inst International Opp IS
|MNOPX||Foreign Large Cap Growth Equities||43.27%||5.64%||50.50%||$284||Consumer Defense|
Wasatch Emerging India Institutional
|WIINX||India Equities||40.86%||2.00%||35.30%||$226||Financial Services|
T. Rowe Price Global Technology Fund – I Class
Morgan Stanley Inst Global Opp IS
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