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

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Mutual Fund Equity Report fund seekers should not consider taking a look at Ivy Small Cap Growth Y (WSCYX - Free Report) at this time. WSCYX holds a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 4 (Sell), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

History of Fund/Manager

Delaware Investments is based in Philadelphia, PA, and is the manager of WSCYX. Since Ivy Small Cap Growth Y made its debut in December of 1995, WSCYX has garnered more than $83.04 million in assets. The fund's current manager, Timothy J. Miller, has been in charge of the fund since April of 2010.

Performance

Investors naturally seek funds with strong performance. This fund in particular has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 8.75%, and is in the bottom 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 6.5%, which places it in the bottom 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. WSCYX's standard deviation over the past three years is 23.47% compared to the category average of 16.58%. Over the past 5 years, the standard deviation of the fund is 21.56% compared to the category average of 14.61%. 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 1.13, which means it is hypothetically 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. Over the past 5 years, the fund has a negative alpha of -4.75. This means that managers in this portfolio find it difficult to pick securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

Holdings

Examining the equity holdings of a mutual fund is also a valuable exercise. This can show us how the manager is applying their stated methodology, as well as if there are any inherent biases in their approach. For this particular fund, the focus is primarily on equities that are traded in the United States.

Currently, this mutual fund is holding 96.99% stock in stocks, and these companies have an average market capitalization of $6.02 billion. The fund has the heaviest exposure to the following market sectors:

  1. Technology
  2. Other
  3. Health
  4. Industrial Cyclical
With turnover at about 57%, this fund is making fewer trades than the average comparable fund.

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, WSCYX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 1.22% compared to the category average of 1.19%. WSCYX is actually more expensive than its peers when you consider factors like cost.

Investors need to be aware that with this product, the minimum initial investment is $0; 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 weak performance, worse downside risk, and higher fees, Ivy Small Cap Growth Y ( WSCYX ) looks like a somewhat weak choice for investors right now.

Want even more information about WSCYX? Then go over to Zacks.com and check out our mutual fund comparison tool, and all of the other great features that we have to help you with your mutual fund analysis 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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