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Is American Century International Opportunity A (AIVOX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

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If investors are looking at the Non US - Equity fund category, make sure to pass over American Century International Opportunity A (AIVOX - Free Report) . AIVOX has a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 4 (Sell), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

AIVOX is classified in the Non US - Equity area by Zacks, and this segment is full of potential. Non US - Equity funds focus their investments on companies outside of the United States, which is an important distinction since global mutual funds tend to keep a sizable portion of their portfolio based in the United States. Most of these funds will allocate across emerging and developed markets, and can often extend across cap levels too.

History of Fund/Manager

American Century is responsible for AIVOX, and the company is based out of Kansas City, MO. American Century International Opportunity A made its debut in March of 2010, and since then, AIVOX has accumulated about $8.22 million in assets, per the most up-to-date date available. A team of investment professionals is the fund's current manager.

Performance

Investors naturally seek funds with strong performance. This fund in particular has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 14.72%, and is in the top third among its category peers. Investors who prefer analyzing shorter time frames should look at its 3-year annualized total return of 8.6%, 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. Compared to the category average of 16.11%, the standard deviation of AIVOX over the past three years is 21.75%. The standard deviation of the fund over the past 5 years is 18.39% compared to the category average of 13.5%. This makes the fund more volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

Investors should note that the fund has a 5-year beta of 1.05, so it is likely going to be more 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. AIVOX's 5-year performance has produced a negative alpha of -2.04, which means managers in this portfolio find it difficult to pick securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

Expenses

For investors, taking a closer look at cost-related metrics is key, since costs are increasingly important for mutual fund investing. Competition is heating up in this space, and a lower cost product will likely outperform its otherwise identical counterpart, all things being equal. In terms of fees, AIVOX is a load fund. It has an expense ratio of 1.65% compared to the category average of 1.19%. Looking at the fund from a cost perspective, AIVOX is actually more expensive than its peers.

Investors should also note that the minimum initial investment for the product is $10,000 and that each subsequent investment needs to be at $50.

Bottom Line

Overall, American Century International Opportunity A ( AIVOX ) has a low Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively strong performance, average downside risk, and higher fees, this fund looks like a poor potential choice for investors right now.

For additional information on this product, or to compare it to other mutual funds in the Non US - Equity, make sure to go to www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds 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.


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