Many investors will constantly search for the best performing mutual fund and end up placing their assets with many investment companies. However, searching this way is always based on the past performance of a fund, and is not an indicator of how the fund will perform in the future. Most investors do not have the knowledge or desire to do a proper search among the 7000+ funds in existence.
Single Fund Family Investing
Average investors should consider placing their funds with one mutual fund company. Such a fund should be a large, well-recognized company that provides a myriad of No-Load mutual fund offerings. Such a company will have funds that cover large domestic stocks, small stocks, commodities, real estate, money markets and a host of specialty funds. Such a menu of funds will more than fulfill the needs of most investors.
Opponents of this approach would note that some of the funds may not be in the top investment performance quartile. True – but funds in the top quartile will most likely not be in that quartile for very long. Funds in the top quartile on quarter are there for good reasons. One is good management, but the other is that the fund is tilted toward certain investments that had stellar performance that period. Six months later, when the market for those certain investments underperforms, those funds will not be in the top quartile. So, the constant search for the top performing funds is a losing game.
Investing with a single fund family has the advantages of dealing with only one company. The investor gets to know that fund’s policies, strengths, weaknesses, and individual fund offerings.
T Rowe Price
One of the best large, well-diversified, No-load, mutual fund companies is T Rowe Price. This company has been around for a long time and has fund offerings across most investment classes. One of the best characteristics of T Rowe is that there are no bells and whistles, no gimmicks, and no misleading advertising. Their funds do not attempt to “reach for performance” by taking investment risks not understood by the investors. What you see is what you get.
Sounds kind of boring, doesn’t it? Exactly – when investing for retirement, an investor does not want “exciting”. Exciting also means risky or costly. Investors want funds that will rise and fall with the markets and fulfill their investment objectives. They do not want funds that will use leverage or invest in securities unrelated to the fund’s objective. Average investors want to invest their money and review their holdings every few months.
T Rowe Price Brokerage
T Rowe Price also has an attached brokerage company. This is very useful when investors want to invest in mutual funds, ETFs and individual securities. Money can easily be moved between the mutual fund company and brokerage company.
Such moves can also be done online where the investor can see all their investments combined. The online trading capabilities are efficient and easy to use. There is also a huge amount of educational materials available to the investor.
One Investors Experience
The above may sound like an Advertisement. But this author gets nothing from T Rowe Price for writing this article and he has had most of his assets invested in T Rowe Price funds for the past 20 years. The funds perform as expected, and there is a wide array of specialty funds that are very appropriate depending upon where the markets are relative to the economic cycle.
The customer service staff is quite helpful and knowledgeable. However, it is interesting that given the good online capabilities, this author has had to speak to the customer service staff roughly 3 times over those 20 years. Everything is done online, from investing, reviewing performance, reading educational materials, submitting questions, etc.
Investors should consider T Rowe Price if they are looking to have complete confidence that their investing needs will be met easily and professionally.