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Is American Century Mid Cap Value Investor (ACMVX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

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There are plenty of choices in the Mid Cap Value category, but where should you start your research? Well, one fund that you should consider investigating is American Century Mid Cap Value Investor (ACMVX - Free Report) . ACMVX holds a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 3 (Hold), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

ACMVX is one of many Mid Cap Value mutual funds to choose from. Mid Cap Value funds usually invest in companies with a stock market valuation between $2 billion and $10 billion; these medium-sized firms possess strong value and income opportunities for investors.

History of Fund/Manager

American Century is responsible for ACMVX, and the company is based out of Kansas City, MO. The American Century Mid Cap Value Investor made its debut in March of 2004 and ACMVX has managed to accumulate roughly $4.23 billion in assets, as of the most recently available information. The fund is currently managed by a team of investment professionals.

Performance

Investors naturally seek funds with strong performance. This fund has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 12.29%, and is in the top third among its category peers. But if you are looking for a shorter time frame, it is also worth looking at its 3-year annualized total return of 9.09%, 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. ACMVX's standard deviation over the past three years is 10.09% compared to the category average of 9.2%. Over the past 5 years, the standard deviation of the fund is 9.5% compared to the category average of 9.08%. This makes the fund more volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

One cannot ignore the volatility of this segment, however, as it is always important for investors to remember the downside to any potential investment. In ACMVX's case, the fund lost 41.64% in the most recent bear market and outperformed its peer group by 9.79%. This means that the fund could possibly be a better choice than its peers during a down market environment.

Investors should note that the fund has a 5-year beta of 0.87, 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. The fund has produced a positive alpha over the past 5 years of 0.73, which shows that managers in this portfolio are skilled in picking securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

Holdings

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 principally on equities that are traded in the United States.

The mutual fund currently has 78.58% of its holdings in stocks, with an average market capitalization of $22.71 billion. The fund has the heaviest exposure to the following market sectors:

  1. Finance
  2. Industrial Cyclical

Turnover is about 49%, so those in charge of the fund make fewer trades than comparable funds.

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, ACMVX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.97% compared to the category average of 1.19%. So, ACMVX is actually cheaper than its peers from a cost perspective.

This fund requires a minimum initial investment of $2,500, and each subsequent investment should be at least $50.

Bottom Line

Overall, American Century Mid Cap Value Investor has a neutral Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively strong performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, American Century Mid Cap Value Investor looks like a somewhat average choice for investors right now.

For additional information on the Mid Cap Value area of the mutual fund world, make sure to check out www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds. There, you can see more about the ranking process, and dive even deeper into ACMVX too 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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