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Is Vanguard Small-Cap Value Index Administrative (VSIAX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

On the lookout for a Small Cap Value fund? Starting with Vanguard Small-Cap Value Index Administrative (VSIAX) is one possibility. VSIAX holds a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 1 (Strong Buy), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

Objective

VSIAX is one of many Small Cap Value funds to choose from. Small Cap Value mutual funds typically invest in companies with market caps under $2 billion. These funds represent value because they offer more bang for an owner's buck, often demonstrated by lower P/E Ratios, high dividend yields, and better-than-average price-to-sales ratios.

History of Fund/Manager

VSIAX is a part of the Vanguard Group family of funds, a company based out of Malvern, PA. Vanguard Small-Cap Value Index Administrative made its debut in September of 2011, and since then, VSIAX has accumulated about $12.37 billion in assets, per the most up-to-date date available. The fund is currently managed by William A. Coleman who has been in charge of the fund since April of 2016.

Performance

Of course, investors look for strong performance in funds. This fund in particular has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 13%, 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 14.38%, 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. Over the past three years, VSIAX's standard deviation comes in at 12.02%, compared to the category average of 10.4%. Looking at the past 5 years, the fund's standard deviation is 11.94% compared to the category average of 10.17%. This makes the fund more volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

Investors cannot discount the risks to this segment though, as it is always important to remember the downside for any potential investment.

Investors should note that the fund has a 5-year beta of 1.02, so it is likely going to be as volatile as the market at large. Alpha is an additional metric to take into consideration, since it represents a portfolio's performance on a risk-adjusted basis relative to a benchmark, which in this case, is the S&P 500. VSIAX has generated a negative alpha over the past five years of -1.4, demonstrating that managers in this portfolio find it difficult to pick 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, VSIAX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.07% compared to the category average of 1.27%. Looking at the fund from a cost perspective, VSIAX is actually cheaper than its peers.

This fund requires a minimum initial investment of $10,000, and each subsequent investment should be at least $1.

Bottom Line

Overall, Vanguard Small-Cap Value Index Administrative ( VSIAX ) has a high Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively strong performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, Vanguard Small-Cap Value Index Administrative ( VSIAX ) looks like a good potential choice for investors right now.

For additional information on this product, or to compare it to other mutual funds in the Small Cap Value, make sure to go to www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds for additional information. For analysis of the rest of your portfolio, make sure to visit Zacks.com for our full suite of tools which will help you investigate all of your stocks and funds in one place.


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