Markets

Is Matthews Asia Dividend Fund Investor (MAPIX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

A generic image of a line graph
Credit: Shutterstock photo

On the lookout for a Pacific Rim - Equity fund? Starting with Matthews Asia Dividend Fund Investor (MAPIX) is one possibility. MAPIX possesses a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 2 (Buy), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

MAPIX is one of many Pacific Rim - Equity funds to choose from. Pacific Rim - Equity mutual funds typically invest in companies throughout the dominant export-focused markets of Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, and Korea. Since Japan mutual funds are already popular in their own right, these Pacific funds will usually invest less than 10% of their assets in Japanese companies.

History of Fund/Manager

MAPIX is a part of the Matthews Asia family of funds, a company based out of San Francisco, CA. Since Matthews Asia Dividend Fund Investor made its debut in October of 2006, MAPIX has garnered more than $2.98 billion in assets. A team of investment professionals is the fund's current manager.

Performance

Of course, investors look for strong performance in funds. MAPIX has a 5-year annualized total return of 4.56% and is in the top 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 6.32%, 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, MAPIX's standard deviation comes in at 11.44%, compared to the category average of 11.17%. The fund's standard deviation over the past 5 years is 11.42% compared to the category average of 11.2%. This makes the fund more volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

One cannot ignore the volatility of this segment, however, as it is always important for investors to remember the downside to any potential investment. In MAPIX's case, the fund lost 34.87% in the most recent bear market and outperformed its peer group by 23.1%. This might suggest that the fund is a better choice than its peers during a bear market.

Nevertheless, investors should also note that the fund has a 5-year beta of 0.78, which means it is hypothetically 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. MAPIX has generated a negative alpha over the past five years of -3.77, demonstrating that managers in this portfolio find it difficult to pick securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

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, MAPIX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.99% compared to the category average of 1.41%. Looking at the fund from a cost perspective, MAPIX is actually cheaper than its peers.

While the minimum initial investment for the product is $2,500, investors should also note that each subsequent investment needs to be at least $100.

Bottom Line

Overall, Matthews Asia Dividend Fund Investor ( MAPIX ) 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.

Don't stop here for your research on Pacific Rim - Equity 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 MAPIX to its peers as well for additional information. And don't forget, Zacks has all of your needs covered on the equity side too! Make sure to check out Zacks.com for more information on our screening capabilities, Rank, and all our articles as well.

Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report

Get Your Free (MAPIX): Fund Analysis Report

To read this article on Zacks.com click here.

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.


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

In This Story

MAPIX

Other Topics

Stocks

Latest Markets Videos

Zacks

Zacks is the leading investment research firm focusing on stock research, analysis and recommendations. In 1978, our founder discovered the power of earnings estimate revisions to enable profitable investment decisions. Today, that discovery is still the heart of the Zacks Rank. A wealth of resources for individual investors is available at www.zacks.com.

Learn More