Back to top

Image: Bigstock

Is Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 Fund (VTXVX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

Read MoreHide Full Article

There are plenty of choices in the Target Date category, but where should you start your research? Well, one fund that might be worth investigating is Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 Fund (VTXVX - Free Report) . The fund does not have a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank, though we have been able to explore other metrics like performance, volatility, and cost.

History of Fund/Manager

VTXVX is a part of the Vanguard Group family of funds, a company based out of Malvern, PA. Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 Fund debuted in October of 2003. Since then, VTXVX has accumulated assets of about $15.64 billion, according to the most recently available information. The fund is currently managed by William Coleman who has been in charge of the fund since February of 2013.

Performance

Of course, investors look for strong performance in funds. This fund in particular has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 7.79%, and it sits 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 7.11%, 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. The standard deviation of VTXVX over the past three years is 7.48% compared to the category average of 8.68%. The fund's standard deviation over the past 5 years is 6.25% compared to the category average of 7.25%. This makes the fund less volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

Investors should note that the fund has a 5-year beta of 0.39, which means it is hypothetically less volatile than the market at large. Another factor to consider is alpha, as it reflects a portfolio's performance on a risk-adjusted basis relative to a benchmark-in this case, the S&P 500. The fund has produced a positive alpha over the past 5 years of 1.11, which shows that managers in this portfolio are skilled in picking securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

Expenses

Costs are increasingly important for mutual fund investing, and particularly as competition heats up in this market. And all things being equal, a lower cost product will outperform its otherwise identical counterpart, so taking a closer look at these metrics is key for investors. In terms of fees, VTXVX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.12% compared to the category average of 0.50%. So, VTXVX is actually cheaper than its peers from a cost perspective.

Investors need to be aware that with this product, the minimum initial investment is $1,000; each subsequent investment needs to be at least $1.

Bottom Line

For additional information on this product, or to compare it to other mutual funds in the Target Date, make sure to go to www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds for additional information. If you want to check out our stock reports as well, make sure to go to Zacks.com to see all of the great tools we have to offer, including our time-tested Zacks Rank.


In-Depth Zacks Research for the Tickers Above


Normally $25 each - click below to receive one report FREE:


Vanguard Target Retiremt 2015 Inv (VTXVX) - free report >>