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Is Lazard Global List Infrastructure Open (GLFOX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

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If you have been looking for Global - Equity funds, it would not be wise to start your search with Lazard Global List Infrastructure Open (GLFOX - Free Report) . GLFOX bears a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 5 (Strong Sell), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

We note that GLFOX is a Global - Equity option, an investment area loaded with different options. While Global - Equity mutual funds invest their assets in large markets--think the U.S., Europe, and Japan--they aren't limited by geography. Their investment technique is one that leverages the global economy in order to offer stable returns.

History of Fund/Manager

GLFOX is a part of the Lazard Funds family of funds, a company based out of New York, NY. Lazard Global List Infrastructure Open made its debut in December of 2009, and since then, GLFOX has accumulated about $517.62 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. GLFOX has a 5-year annualized total return of 13.02% and it sits 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 9.25%, 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. The standard deviation of GLFOX over the past three years is 9.87% compared to the category average of 9.98%. The standard deviation of the fund over the past 5 years is 8.97% compared to the category average of 9.75%. This makes the fund less volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

Investors should always remember the downsides to a potential investment, and this segment carries some risks one should be aware of.

Investors should not forget about beta, an important way to measure a mutual fund's risk compared to the market as a whole. GLFOX has a 5-year beta of 0.45, which means it is likely to be less volatile than the market average. 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. GLFOX has generated a positive alpha over the past five years of 6.98, demonstrating that managers in this portfolio are skilled in picking securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

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, GLFOX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 1.21% compared to the category average of 1.19%. Looking at the fund from a cost perspective, GLFOX is actually more expensive than its peers.

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

Bottom Line

Overall, Lazard Global List Infrastructure Open 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.

This could just be the start of your research on GLFOXin the Global - Equity category. Consider going to www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds for additional information about this fund, and all the others that we rank as well 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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