I look back at funds we upgraded to see how they performed.
Fund fees have remarkable predictive power, and investors can put them to their advantage.
Morningstar's annual investor returns study shows that investors have used funds more effectively over the last decade than during other periods, but there are some caveats, says Russ Kinnel.
There are some downsides when a manager leaves, but it's not always a reason to hit the 'sell' button, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Outflows across a complex can be damaging to fund parent companies.
New research shows how investors can dramatically improve their outcomes by buying cheaper funds.
Outflows add to the challenges facing active stock fund managers.
These categories have come back to life this year and provide another lesson on the importance of portfolio diversification, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Becker Value comanager Marian Kessler discusses the fund's sell discipline, as well as her outlook for top holdings JP Morgan, Pfizer, and ExxonMobil.
Some skilled managers just hit their 10-year anniversaries.
The flow of assets to passive strategies is leaving some active funds saddled with sizable potential capital gains, style shifts, and the possibility of closure, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
These five funds are solid defensive plays.
Hint: Tax efficiency is not the right goal.
Commodities funds, understandably, have been hit hard by the downturn, but so have funds in the emerging-markets, high-yield, bank-loan, and value-oriented categories, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Take a look at the buys and sells of some top funds across the Morningstar Style Box.
Picks in three categories for the contrarian investor.
Defensive-minded funds holding cash, gold, and high-quality companies have tended to outperform peers so far this year, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
There are more safeguards than you think.
A look at which funds took it on the chin and which remained unscathed.
Three U.S. large-cap categories as well as U.S. small value saw the biggest outflows last year and could add a contrarian flavor to investors' portfolios, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Investors should be aware of the general risks of buying bond funds that own non-rated, smaller issues, and the specific risks that the energy sector brings to high-yield funds today.
Energy-related sector funds aren't the only ones taking a hit.
Too much of a good thing.
What I own and why.
Active large-growth funds have struggled to outperform their benchmark recently, but these medalists have delivered, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Looking at some under-the-radar fund ratings.
Some defensive-minded funds have thrived, while others have outperformed by playing offense or pulling back on some hard-hit areas of the market, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Evaluating manager changes at funds from T. Rowe Price, Vanguard, and more.
It already settled with one firm in a recent sweep examining sub-transfer-agency fees, but there may be others.
Funds with big industrial and energy stakes that may be on Warren's wavelength.
Dividend-growth and low-volatility strategies should continue to perform well for investors, while currency-hedged and risk-parity funds may be better in theory than they are in practice, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
It's a plan loaded with good long-term options.
These Morningstar Medalists are among our favorites.
Delafield, Lateef, and Mairs & Power Growth have all suffered recently due to their heavy stakes in beaten-down sectors, but they could spell opportunity for patient investors, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Performance has been all over the map in 2015.
American Beacon Small Cap Value and Diamond Hill Small Cap are two strong active options that are still accepting new investors, while Vanguard Small Cap Value is a great passive choice, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Morningstar Director of Fund Research Russ Kinnel puts today's market activity into perspective.
Only 50 of 8,000 funds passed all my tests.
Why investors get less than their funds' total return.
Why Goodhaven's Larry Pitkowsky likes underperformers WPX Energy and Barrick Gold, as well as lesser-known Walter Investment Management.
Most U.S.-based investors investing in China are fairly insulated from the recent turmoil, says Matthews' Andy Rothman.
Most of Morningstar's top Medalists are shining in a pack of broad returns.
I look at the highlights and lowlights in equityland.
A handful of funds have seen volatility decline even more than the overall market, but this may be only temporary for some of them, says Morningstar's Russ Kinnel.
Managers at the Morningstar Investment Conference paint a gloomy scenario for fixed income, reports Morningstar FundInvestor editor Russ Kinnel.
FundInvestor editor Russ Kinnel recaps the discussion on the phony active-passive debate, GMO's dire predictions and current allocations, and why emerging markets may be the best pocket of value.
Should you hold on or bail?
Many of these funds are gaining investors who are fleeing PIMCO Total Return.
You can get into these great funds if you really want to.