A Mutual fund is usually a company that invests on behalf of its clients via multiple investing options including stocks, bonds, short-term money market instruments, or other securities and assets. Many mutual funds seek to have a diverse portfolio that aim to lower risk that would be experienced by individuals investing in a single financial product. In addition, financial advisers with the support of many staffers, researchers, and technology, manage the mutual fund with the aim of its maximum growth. Thus, it has become one of the most sought after investment strategies for beginners and expert investors alike as it can provide the investors with certain amount of security, stability and growth with relatively minimum risk.
Downside of investing in mutual funds
However, having expertise, research evidence, or technology does not guarantee a lucrative return from an investment made in mutual funds. Therefore, a mutual fund that performed better in the previous year may perform badly in the following year. At the same time, as the FDIC or any other government agency does not cover mutual funds, it is possible to lose money by investing in the same. In addition, hidden expenses and taxes that may be part of mutual fund management could eat into the gains at the end of the year. Therefore, before investing in a mutual fund, one need to assess many different factors and following are some of the things to consider before making an investment decision.
Factors to consider before investing in a mutual fund
Among the factors that needs to be considered, the fees charged for the services is a major concern with most mutual funds. If a mutual fund charges a higher fee when compared to other mutual funds pertaining to each of its transactions or as annual fees, it should also have a higher growth than the other mutual funds to be a worthwhile investment. Therefore, one should shop around for the mutual fund, which projects the highest potential for growth, and has the most justifiable fee before making a commitment.
The past performance of a mutual fund is another important, although not a guaranteed way of assessing the potential of a mutual fund. However, having a constant growth or a stable outcome in the past few years would be a good indicator of the potential of a mutual fund to be successful in the coming years. However, there are many other factors that would contribute towards the success of a mutual fund and therefore factors such as the managers who take care of the mutual fund, length of time the fund was in existence, as well as its performance against similar mutual funds are also considered important.
The tax on annual gain is another important consideration before investing in a mutual fund. This is because purchasing shares of a mutual fund just before offering annual gains to its investors means an extra tax placed upon the investment, and as if the investment was in existence throughout the year. Therefore, knowing the time of distribution for the annual gain is vital before investing in a mutual fund.
The volatility of the gains or losses experienced by a mutual fund should also be taken into consideration when selecting the right mutual fund. According to experts, if the mutual fund shows wide variation in its month-to-month or annual gains and losses, it may be a risky investment when considering the short-term goals.
Apart from these, it is necessary to practice safe investment strategies such as the ones described by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in order to become successful with any investment decision.