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Is Ivy Small Cap Growth Y (WSCYX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

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If you've been stuck searching for Small Cap Growth funds, you might want to consider passing on by Ivy Small Cap Growth Y (WSCYX - Free Report) as a possibility. WSCYX possesses a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 5 (Strong Sell), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

WSCYX is one of many different Small Cap Growth funds to choose from. Small Cap Growth mutual funds build portfolios around stocks with markets caps under $2 billion and large growth opportunities. Additionally, these portfolios typically highlight smaller companies in promising markets and industries.

History of Fund/Manager

Ivy Funds is based in Boca Raton, FL, and is the manager of WSCYX. Ivy Small Cap Growth Y made its debut in December of 1995, and since then, WSCYX has accumulated about $91 million in assets, per the most up-to-date date available. The fund is currently managed by a team of investment professionals.

Performance

Obviously, what investors are looking for in these funds is strong performance relative to their peers. WSCYX has a 5-year annualized total return of 14.63% and is in the middle third among its category peers. Investors who prefer analyzing shorter time frames should look at its 3-year annualized total return of 14.39%, 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. Compared to the category average of 15.26%, the standard deviation of WSCYX over the past three years is 23.84%. Looking at the past 5 years, the fund's standard deviation is 20.09% compared to the category average of 13.1%. This makes the fund more volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

The fund has a 5-year beta of 1.18, so investors should note that it is hypothetically more 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. Over the past 5 years, the fund has a negative alpha of -0.99. This means 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, WSCYX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 1.28% compared to the category average of 1.22%. WSCYX is actually more expensive than its peers when you consider factors like cost.

Investors should also note that the minimum initial investment for the product is $0 and that each subsequent investment has no minimum amount.

Bottom Line

Overall, Ivy Small Cap Growth Y ( WSCYX ) has a low Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively similar performance, worse downside risk, and higher fees, this fund looks like a somewhat weak choice for investors right now.

Don't stop here for your research on Small 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 WSCYX to its peers 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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