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Is Franklin Growth A (FKGRX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

On the lookout for a Large Cap Growth fund? Starting with Franklin Growth A (FKGRX) is one possibility. FKGRX carries a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 1 (Strong Buy), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

We classify FKGRX in the Large Cap Growth category, an area rife with potential choices. Large Cap Growth funds invest in many large U.S. companies that are expected to grow much faster compared to other large-cap stocks. To be considered large-cap, companies must have a market cap over $10 billion.

History of Fund/Manager

Franklin Templeton is based in San Mateo, CA, and is the manager of FKGRX. The Franklin Growth A made its debut in March of 1948 and FKGRX has managed to accumulate roughly $8.76 billion in assets, as of the most recently available information. A team of investment professionals is the fund's current manager.

Performance

Of course, investors look for strong performance in funds. This fund in particular has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 11.89%, and is in the middle third among its category peers. If you're interested in shorter time frames, do not dismiss looking at the fund's 3-year annualized total return of 12.68%, which places it in the middle 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. FKGRX's standard deviation over the past three years is 10.54% compared to the category average of 9.15%. The fund's standard deviation over the past 5 years is 10.2% compared to the category average of 9.29%. This makes the fund more 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. In FKGRX's case, the fund lost 47.27% in the most recent bear market and outperformed its peer group by 1.51%. This means that the fund could possibly be a better choice than its peers during a down market environment.

Even still, the fund has a 5-year beta of 0.98, so investors should note that it is hypothetically as volatile as the market at large. Alpha is an additional metric to take into consideration, since it represents a portfolio's performance on a risk-adjusted basis relative to a benchmark, which in this case, is the S&P 500. The fund has produced a positive alpha over the past 5 years of 0.96, which shows that managers in this portfolio are skilled in picking 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, FKGRX is a load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.83% compared to the category average of 1.10%. Looking at the fund from a cost perspective, FKGRX is actually cheaper than its peers.

This fund requires a minimum initial investment of $1,000, while there is no minimum for each subsequent investment.

Bottom Line

Overall, Franklin Growth A ( FKGRX ) has a high Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively similar performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, this fund looks like a good potential choice for investors right now.

Don't stop here for your research on Large Cap Growth 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 FKGRX to its peers as well for additional information. If you are more of a stock investor, make sure to also check out our Zacks Rank, and our full suite of tools we have available for novice and professional investors alike.

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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.


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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