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Justin Kuepper Jan 08, 2016
The Turner Medical Science Long/Short Investor Shares Fund (TMSFX) was the third-best performer in 2015 with a 17.9% gain on the year. With health care being the top performing sector during the year, the fund managed to generate above-market performance with an actively managed portfolio that was strategically selected to focus on growth. Horizon Pharma plc (HZNP), which soared about 70% throughout 2015, was among its top holdings.
The health care sector will likely continue to outperform in 2016 as a safe haven investment class driven by an aging population. With lofty private market valuations, the technology industry is a bit less certain moving into 2016. The lackluster IPO of Square Inc. (SQ) led to some concerns that private market valuations may be too frothy for public market investors who are looking for tangible revenue and a pathway to profitability in many cases.
The Wasatch International Growth Fund (WAIGX) was the fifth-strongest performer during 2015, generating gains of 15.2% on the year. With its focus on foreign small- and mid-cap growth companies, the fund holds a primarily technology-driven portfolio that also includes elements of consumer cyclical, health care, and industrial stocks. Many of these holdings outperformed during 2015 as the domestic portion of emerging markets saw improvements.
Looking into 2016, many countries are likely to continue seeing strong equity performance relative to the U.S. or other developed markets. The strong U.S. dollar could jeopardize emerging-market equities to a certain extent, but growing domestic demand may favor certain services-based companies. Japan and the euro zone could also see further improvements in equities if their central banks continue monetary easing policies in 2016.
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