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Is Columbia Global Technology Growth A (CTCAX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?


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If you have been looking for Sector - Tech funds, a place to start could be Columbia Global Technology Growth A CTCAX . CTCAX holds a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 1 (Strong Buy), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

We note that CTCAX is a Sector - Tech option, and this area is loaded with many options. Found in a wide number of industries such as semiconductors, software, internet, and networking, tech companies are everywhere. Thus, Sector - Tech mutual funds that invest in technology let investors own a stake in a notoriously volatile sector, but with a much more diversifies approach.

History of Fund/Manager

Columbia is based in Boston, MA, and is the manager of CTCAX. Columbia Global Technology Growth A made its debut in November of 2002, and since then, CTCAX has accumulated about $301.60 million in assets, per the most up-to-date date available. The fund is currently managed by Rahul Narang who has been in charge of the fund since July of 2012.

Performance

Of course, investors look for strong performance in funds. CTCAX has a 5-year annualized total return of 25.85% and is in the top third among its category peers. Investors who prefer analyzing shorter time frames should look at its 3-year annualized total return of 25.71%, which places it in the top 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. Over the past three years, CTCAX's standard deviation comes in at 14.24%, compared to the category average of 9.94%. Over the past 5 years, the standard deviation of the fund is 13.18% compared to the category average of 13.71%. This makes the fund less volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

Investors should always remember the downsides to a potential investment, and this segment carries some risks one should be aware of. CTCAX lost 56.92% in the most recent bear market and underperformed comparable funds by 4.12%. This makes the fund a possibly worse choice than its peers during a sliding market environment.

Investors should not forget about beta, an important way to measure a mutual fund's risk compared to the market as a whole. CTCAX has a 5-year beta of 1.09, which means it is likely to be more 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. CTCAX's 5-year performance has produced a positive alpha of 7.76, which means managers in this portfolio are skilled in picking securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

Holdings

Examining the equity holdings of a mutual fund is also a valuable exercise. This can show us how the manager is applying their stated methodology, as well as if there are any inherent biases in their approach. For this particular fund, the focus is principally on equities that are traded in the United States.

Right now, 85% of this mutual fund's holdings are stocks, with an average market capitalization of $233.81 billion.

Expenses

As competition heats up in the mutual fund market, costs become increasingly important. Compared to its otherwise identical counterpart, a low-cost product will be an outperformer, all other things being equal. Thus, taking a closer look at cost-related metrics is vital for investors. In terms of fees, CTCAX is a load fund. It has an expense ratio of 1.32% compared to the category average of 1.37%. From a cost perspective, CTCAX is actually cheaper than its peers.

Investors need to be aware that with this product, the minimum initial investment is $2,000; each subsequent investment has no minimum amount.

Bottom Line

Overall, Columbia Global Technology Growth A has a high Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively strong performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, Columbia Global Technology Growth A looks like a good potential choice for investors right now.

Don't stop here for your research on Sector - Tech funds. We also have plenty more on our site in order to help you find the best possible fund for your portfolio. Make sure to check out www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds for more information about the world of funds, and feel free to compare CTCAX to its peers as well for additional information. If you want to check out our stock reports as well, make sure to go to Zacks.com to see all of the great tools we have to offer, including our time-tested Zacks Rank.


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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 Nasdaq, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Mutual Funds
Referenced Symbols: CTCAX


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