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Is Vanguard Global Equity Fund (VHGEX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

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There are plenty of choices in the Global - Equity category, but where should you start your research? Well, one fund that might be worth investigating is Vanguard Global Equity Fund (VHGEX - Free Report) . VHGEX has a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 2 (Buy), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

Zacks categorizes VHGEX as Global - Equity, which is a segment packed with options. Global - Equity mutual funds invest in large markets like the U.S., Europe, and Japan, and operate with very few geographical limitations. They also provide an investment technique that leverages the diverse nature of the global economy in the hopes of providing a stable return.

History of Fund/Manager

Vanguard Group is based in Malvern, PA, and is the manager of VHGEX. Since Vanguard Global Equity Fund made its debut in August of 1995, VHGEX has garnered more than $9.06 billion in assets. The fund's current manager is a team of investment professionals.

Performance

Obviously, what investors are looking for in these funds is strong performance relative to their peers. This fund carries a 5-year annualized total return of 15.94%, and it sits 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 15.82%, 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. VHGEX's standard deviation over the past three years is 18.45% compared to the category average of 18.6%. The standard deviation of the fund over the past 5 years is 14.91% compared to the category average of 15.16%. 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 0.94, so it is likely going to be 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. Over the past 5 years, the fund has a negative alpha of -0.35. This means that 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, VHGEX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.45% compared to the category average of 1.13%. From a cost perspective, VHGEX is actually cheaper than its peers.

While the minimum initial investment for the product is $3,000, investors should also note that each subsequent investment needs to be at least $1.

Bottom Line

Overall, Vanguard Global Equity Fund ( VHGEX ) has a high Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively strong performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, Vanguard Global Equity Fund ( VHGEX ) looks like a good potential choice for investors right now.

Don't stop here for your research on Global - Equity 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 VHGEX to its peers as well 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.


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