Technology

Is Fidelity Asset Manager 50% (FASMX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

Allocation Balanced fund seekers should consider taking a look at Fidelity Asset Manager 50% (FASMX). FASMX holds a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 2 (Buy), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

The world of Zacks' Allocation Balanced funds is an area filled with options, such as FASMX. These funds like to invest in a variety of asset types, finding a balance between stocks, bonds, cash, and sometimes even precious metals and commodities; they are mostly categorized by their respective asset allocation. For investors, Allocation Balanced funds can provide an entry point into diversified mutual funds, and present core holding options for a portfolio of funds.

History of Fund/Manager

FASMX is a part of the Fidelity family of funds, a company based out of Boston, MA. The Fidelity Asset Manager 50% made its debut in December of 1988 and FASMX has managed to accumulate roughly $11.06 billion in assets, as of the most recently available information. The fund's current manager, Geoffrey Stein, has been in charge of the fund since June of 2009.

Performance

Investors naturally seek funds with strong performance. This fund carries a 5-year annualized total return of 9.8%, 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 10.3%, 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. FASMX's standard deviation over the past three years is 10.83% compared to the category average of 13.98%. Over the past 5 years, the standard deviation of the fund is 8.69% compared to the category average of 11.53%. This makes the fund less volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

Investors should note that the fund has a 5-year beta of 0.55, so it is likely going to be less volatile than the market at large. 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. The fund has produced a negative alpha over the past 5 years of -0.11, which shows that managers in this portfolio find it difficult to pick 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, FASMX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.61% compared to the category average of 0.89%. FASMX is actually cheaper than its peers when you consider factors like cost.

While the minimum initial investment for the product is $0, investors should also note that there is no minimum for each subsequent investment.

Bottom Line

Overall, Fidelity Asset Manager 50% ( FASMX ) has a high Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively strong performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, this fund looks like a good potential choice for investors right now.

Your research on the Allocation Balanced segment doesn't have to stop here. You can check out all the great mutual fund tools we have to offer by going to www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds to see the additional features we offer as well 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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Zacks Investment Research

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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