3 Safe Large-Cap Value Funds to Avoid Market Volatility

Volatility has returned to Wall Street after a superb first quarter that saw all three major indexes hitting record highs. On Apr 19, the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 recorded their sixth straight sessions of decline, with both the indexes ending the week 5.5% and 3% lower, respectively.

Tech stocks, which were responsible for the rally in 2023 and the first quarter of this year, suffered the most as fresh fears of a delay in rate cuts and rising geopolitical tensions led to a massive selloff.

The Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged in its current range of 5.25-5.5% in its March FOMC meeting and said that it still plans three rate cuts by the end of this year.

However, rising inflation might offset the Federal Reserve’s plans. The consumer price index (CPI) rose 3.5% year over year in March and 0.4% sequentially. Inflation resumed its climb in 2024 after declining sharply over the past year.

The Federal Reserve said that it will initiate rate cuts only when the officials are confident that inflation is declining at a fast pace. Investors are now concerned that rising inflation might delay the timing of the first rate cut.

Also, geopolitical tensions in the Middle East between Iran and Israel have raised fears that it could drive oil prices higher, which could impact inflation.

In light of these circumstances, an astute investor might consider investing in large-cap value funds as a strategy to effectively manage risks. Historically, large-cap funds have exhibited stability and are generally perceived as more dependable compared to mid- or small-cap funds.

Also, value funds, which typically comprise dividend-paying stocks priced below fundamental metrics like earnings, book value and debt-to-equity ratios, present an appealing option for investors seeking lucrative investment opportunities.

3 Best Choices

We've identified three large-cap value mutual funds that have demonstrated impressive annualized returns over 3-year and 5-year periods. These funds also hold a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of #1 (Strong Buy), require an initial investment of no more than $5,000 and have a low expense ratio.

The question here is: why should investors consider mutual funds? Reduced transaction costs and diversification of portfolio without several commission charges that are associated with stock purchases are primarily why one should be parking money in mutual funds (read more: Mutual Funds: Advantages, Disadvantages, and How They Make Investors Money).

Homestead Value HOVLX fund seeks capital growth over the long term and, secondarily, income. Under ordinary conditions, HOVLX invests at least 80% of its total assets in common stocks of established companies.

HOVLX’s 3-year and 5-year annualized returns are 10.8% and 13%, respectively. Homestead Valuefund has a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank #1 and an annual expense ratio of 0.64%.

To see how this fund performed compared to its category, and other 1 and 2 Ranked Mutual Funds, please click here.

Dodge & Cox Stock I DODGX fund seeks long-term growth of principal and income. A secondary objective is to achieve a reasonable current income. DODGX invests primarily in a broadly diversified portfolio of common stocks.

DODGX’s 3-year and 5-year annualized returns are 10.4% and 13.6%, respectively. Dodge & Cox Stock I fund has a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank #1 and an annual expense ratio of 0.51%.

To see how this fund performed compared to its category, and other 1 and 2 Ranked Mutual Funds, please click here.

Shelton Equity Income Investor EQTIX fund seeks to achieve a high level of income and capital appreciation by investing primarily in income-producing U.S. equity securities. EQTIX invests primarily in securities that generate a relatively high level of dividend income and have the potential for capital appreciation. Shelton Equity Income Investor fund also invests at least 80% of its total assets in stocks.

EQTIX’s 3-year and 5-year annualized returns are 9.5% and 11.4%, respectively. Shelton Equity Income Investor fund has a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank #1 and an annual expense ratio of 0.69%.

To see how this fund performed compared to its category, and other 1 and 2 Ranked Mutual Funds, please click here.

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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.

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