5 Best Performing Utilities Mutual Funds Year to Date - Best Performing Funds Year To Date

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During difficult economic conditions, the demand for essential services such as utilities remains more or less constant. Since this category of funds protects investments during a downturn, they are viewed as a defensive choice, and have gained strength in current market conditions. They are also an excellent choice for investors seeking a steady income flow from consistent dividends yields. Investments in this sector are usually considered to be a conservative investment option. However, many utilities funds are now venturing into emerging markets and provide appreciably higher returns at relatively lower levels of risk.

Below we will share with you the 5 best performing utilities mutual funds year to date. To view the Zacks Rank and past performance of all utilities funds, investors can click here to see the complete list of funds .

Mutual Fund

Zacks Rank

Total Return YTD

ProFunds Utilities UltraSector

#2 Buy

16.11%

Meeder Utilities and Infrastructure

#3 Hold

14.14%

American Century Utilities

#2 Buy

13.86%

Vanguard Utilities Index

#5 Strong Sell

11.08%

Fidelity Select Utilities Portfolio

#5 Strong Sell

10.64%

ProFunds Utilities UltraSector (UTPIX) seeks to provide 150% of the daily return of the Dow Jones U.S. Utilities Index by investing in equity securities and derivatives with identical daily returns. The balance of the fund's assets is utilized to purchase money market securities. The utilities mutual fund has a three year annualized return of 20.93%.

Hratch Najarian is the fund manager and has managed this utilities mutual fund since 2011.

Meeder Utilities and Infrastructure (FLRUX) invests the majority of its assets in domestic and foreign utility companies including its suppliers and subcontractors. A minimum of 25% of its assets are parked for investment in public utility companies. Investment are made in those companies which mint more than 50% of its revenues via supplying services and equipment to utility companies. The utilities mutual fund has a three year annualized return of 13.39%.

The utilities mutual fund has an expense ratio of 1.89% compared to a category average of 1.23%.

American Century Utilities (BULIX) seeks capital and income growth along with current income. A large share of its assets is invested in companies whose primary operations are involved in the utility sector. Quantitative and qualitative techniques are used to identify the company for investment. The utilities mutual fund has a three year annualized return of 16.53%.

As of March 2013, this utilities mutual fund held 50 issues, with 11.02% of its total assets invested in AT&T Inc.

Vanguard Utilities Index Fund Admiral Shares (VUIAX) seeks to perform in line with the benchmarks index's performance. The fund invests all its assets in stocks that constitute the MSCI U.S. Investable Market Index (IMI)/ Utilities 25/50. This index consists of companies from the utilities sector regardless of their market capitalization. The utilities mutual fund has a three year annualized return of 15.42%.

Donald M. Butler is the fund manager has managed this utilities mutual fund since 2004.

Fidelity Select Utilities Portfolio (FSUTX) invests the majority of its assets in utility companies or those deriving a large share of their revenues from operations in this sector. The fund focuses in acquiring common stocks. The fund may invest in both domestic and foreign instruments. The utilities mutual fund has a three year annualized return of 16.30%.

The utilities mutual fund has an expense ratio of 0.79% compared to a category average of 1.23%.

To view the Zacks Rank and past performance of all utilities mutual funds, investors can click here to see the complete list of funds .

About Zacks Mutual Fund Rank

By applying the Zacks Rank to mutual funds, investors can find funds that not only outpaced the market in the past but are also expected to outperform going forward. Learn more about the Zacks Mutual Fund Rank at http://www.zacks.com/funds .



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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Stocks

Referenced Stocks: BULIX , FLRUX , IMI , UTPIX , VUIAX

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