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Is Vanguard Financials Index Admiral (VFAIX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

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If you've been stuck searching for Mutual Fund Equity Report funds, consider Vanguard Financials Index Admiral (VFAIX - Free Report) as a possibility. 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

Vanguard Group is responsible for VFAIX, and the company is based out of Malvern, PA. Vanguard Financials Index Admiral debuted in January of 2004. Since then, VFAIX has accumulated assets of about $780.17 million, according to the most recently available information. The fund's current manager, William Coleman, has been in charge of the fund since December of 2015.


Investors naturally seek funds with strong performance. VFAIX has a 5-year annualized total return of 6.18% and is 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 8.71%, 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. VFAIX's standard deviation over the past three years is 26.61% compared to the category average of 28.07%. The fund's standard deviation over the past 5 years is 23.25% compared to the category average of 24.35%. 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 1.1, which means 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 -3.04. This means that managers in this portfolio find it difficult to pick securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.


Exploring 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 mostly on equities that are traded in the United States.

Right now, 84.27% of this mutual fund's holdings are stocks, which have an average market capitalization of $93.61 billion. Turnover is 6%, which means this fund makes fewer trades than the average comparable fund.


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, VFAIX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.10% compared to the category average of 1.48%. VFAIX is actually cheaper than its peers when you consider factors like cost.

This fund requires a minimum initial investment of $100,000, and each subsequent investment should be at least $1.

Bottom Line

Want even more information about VFAIX? Then go over to 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 are more of a stock investor, make sure to also check out our Zacks Rank, and our full suite of tools we have available for novice and professional investors alike.

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