Seeking Alpha

Best And Worst Q4 2019: Large-Cap Blend ETFs And Mutual Funds

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Includes: GQLOX, PAGTX, PMOM, SPHQ
by: David Trainer
David Trainer
Long/short equity, value, research analyst, Deep Value
Summary

The Large-Cap Blend style ranks first in Q4'19.

Based on an aggregation of ratings of 65 ETFs and 698 mutual funds in the Large-Cap Blend style.

SPHQ is our top-rated Large-Cap Blend ETF and GQLOX is our top-rated Large-Cap Blend mutual fund.

The Large-Cap Blend style ranks first out of the twelve fund styles as detailed in our Q4'19 Style Ratings for ETFs and Mutual Funds report. Last quarter, the Large-Cap Blend style ranked first as well. It gets our Very Attractive rating, which is based on an aggregation of ratings of 65 ETFs and 698 mutual funds in the Large-Cap Blend style. See a recap of our Q3'19 Style Ratings here.

Figures 1 and 2 show the five best and worst rated ETFs and mutual funds in the style. Not all Large-Cap Blend style ETFs and mutual funds are created the same. The number of holdings varies widely (from 20 to 1510). This variation creates drastically different investment implications and, therefore, ratings.

Investors seeking exposure to the Large-Cap Blend style should buy one of the Attractive-or-better rated ETFs or mutual funds from Figures 1 and 2.

Our Robo-Analyst technology[1] empowers our unique ETF and mutual fund rating methodology, which leverages our rigorous analysis of each fund’s holdings.[2] Only our research utilizes the superior data and earnings adjustments featured by the HBS & MIT Sloan paper,Core Earnings: New Data and Evidence.” We think advisors and investors focused on prudent investment decisions should include analysis of fund holdings in their research process for ETFs and mutual funds.

Figure 1: ETFs with the Best and Worst Ratings – Top 5

* Best ETFs exclude ETFs with TNAs less than $100 million for inadequate liquidity.

Sources: New Constructs, LLC and company filings

State Street SPDR MFS Systematic Core Equity ETF (SYE), Invesco S&P 100 Equal Weight ETF (EQWL), and First Trust Mega Cap AlphaDEX Fund (FMK) are excluded from Figure 1 because their total net assets (TNA) are below $100 million and do not meet our liquidity minimums.

Figure 2: Mutual Funds with the Best and Worst Ratings – Top 5

* Best mutual funds exclude funds with TNAs less than $100 million for inadequate liquidity.

Sources: New Constructs, LLC and company filings

FundVantage Gotham Large Fund (GVALX), ALPS Series Clarkston Fund (CILGX), and FundVantage Gotham Enhanced S&P 500 Index Fund (GSPFX) are excluded from Figure 2 because their total net assets ((TNA)) are below $100 million and do not meet our liquidity minimums.

Invesco S&P 500 Quality ETF (SPHQ) is the top-rated Large Cap Blend ETF and GMO Quality Fund (GQLOX) is the top-rated Large Cap Blend mutual fund. Both earn a Very Attractive rating.

Principal Sustainable Momentum Index (PMOM) is the worst rated Large Cap Blend ETF and Pacific Advisors Large Cap Fund (PAGTX) is the worst rated Large Cap Blend mutual fund. PMOM earns a Neutral rating and PAGTX earns a Very Unattractive rating.

The Danger Within

Buying a fund without analyzing its holdings is like buying a stock without analyzing its business and finances. Put another way, research on fund holdings is necessary due diligence because a fund’s performance is only as good as its holdings’ performance.

Performance of Holdings = Performance of Fund

Analyzing each holding within funds is no small task. Our Robo-Analyst technology enables us to perform this diligence with scale and provide the research needed to fulfill the fiduciary duty of care. More of the biggest names in the financial industry (see At BlackRock, Machines Are Rising Over Managers to Pick Stocks) are now embracing technology to leverage machines in the investment research process. Technology may be the only solution to the dual mandate for research: Cut costs and fulfill the fiduciary duty of care. Investors, clients, advisors and analysts deserve the latest in technology to get the diligence required to make prudent investment decisions.

Figures 3 and 4 show the rating landscape of all Large Cap Blend ETFs and mutual funds.

Figure 3: Separating the Best ETFs from the Worst Funds

Sources: New Constructs, LLC and company filings

Figure 4: Separating the Best Mutual Funds from the Worst Funds

Sources: New Constructs, LLC and company filings

This article originally published on October 23, 2019.

Disclosure: David Trainer, Kyle Guske II, and Sam McBride receive no compensation to write about any specific stock, style, or theme.

[1] Harvard Business School features the powerful impact of our research automation technology in the case New Constructs: Disrupting Fundamental Analysis with Robo-Analysts.

[2] This paper compares our analytics on a mega cap company to other major providers. The Appendix details exactly how we stack up.

Disclosure: I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.