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Is Artisan High Income Fund Investor Shares (ARTFX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

Zacks Equity Research

If you've been stuck searching for Index funds, consider Artisan High Income Fund Investor Shares (ARTFX) as a possibility. The fund does not have a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank, though we have been able to explore other metrics like performance, volatility, and cost.

History of Fund/Manager

Artisan Funds is responsible for ARTFX, and the company is based out of Boston, MA. Artisan High Income Fund Investor Shares debuted in March of 2014. Since then, ARTFX has accumulated assets of about $986.64 million, according to the most recently available information. The fund is currently managed by Bryan C. Krug who has been in charge of the fund since March of 2014.

Performance

Of course, investors look for strong performance in funds. This fund in particular has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 6.34%, and is in the middle third among its category peers. Investors who prefer analyzing shorter time frames should look at its 3-year annualized total return of 8.15%, which places it in the middle third during this time-frame.

When looking at a fund's performance, it is also important to note the standard deviation of the returns. The lower the standard deviation, the less volatility the fund experiences. Compared to the category average of 8.45%, the standard deviation of ARTFX over the past three years is 4.17%. The standard deviation of the fund over the past 5 years is 4.77% compared to the category average of 9.13%. This makes the fund less volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

One cannot ignore the volatility of this segment, however, as it is always important for investors to remember the downside to any potential investment.

Nevertheless, with a 5-year beta of 0.21, the fund is likely to be less volatile than the market average. Because alpha represents a portfolio's performance on a risk-adjusted basis relative to a benchmark, which is the S&P 500 in this case, one should pay attention to this metric as well. With a positive alpha of 5.22, managers in this portfolio are skilled in picking securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

Expenses

For investors, taking a closer look at cost-related metrics is key, since costs are increasingly important for mutual fund investing. Competition is heating up in this space, and a lower cost product will likely outperform its otherwise identical counterpart, all things being equal. In terms of fees, ARTFX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.99% compared to the category average of 0.76%. From a cost perspective, ARTFX is actually more expensive than its peers.

While the minimum initial investment for the product is $1,000, investors should also note that there is no minimum for each subsequent investment.

Bottom Line

For additional information on the Index area of the mutual fund world, make sure to check out www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds. There, you can see more about the ranking process, and dive even deeper into ARTFX too for additional information. Want to learn even more? We have a full suite of tools on stocks that you can use to find the best choices for your portfolio too, no matter what kind of investor you are.


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