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Is Fidelity Telecom/Utilities Fund (FIUIX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

If investors are looking at the Mutual Fund Equity Report fund category, Fidelity Telecom/Utilities Fund (FIUIX) could be a potential option. FIUIX carries a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 1 (Strong Buy), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

History of Fund/Manager

FIUIX finds itself in the Fidelity family, based out of Boston, MA. The Fidelity Telecom/Utilities Fund made its debut in November of 1987 and FIUIX has managed to accumulate roughly $1.01 billion in assets, as of the most recently available information. The fund's current manager, Douglas Simmons, has been in charge of the fund since September of 2005.

Performance

Obviously, what investors are looking for in these funds is strong performance relative to their peers. This fund carries a 5-year annualized total return of 8.03%, and it sits in the middle third among its category peers. Investors who prefer analyzing shorter time frames should look at its 3-year annualized total return of 6.92%, 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. The standard deviation of FIUIX over the past three years is 15.91% compared to the category average of 17.25%. The standard deviation of the fund over the past 5 years is 13.56% compared to the category average of 14.66%. This makes the fund less volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

With a 5-year beta of 0.55, the fund is likely to be less volatile than the market average. 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 positive alpha of 1.09. This means 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, FIUIX is a no load fund. It has an expense ratio of 0.60% compared to the category average of 1.22%. Looking at the fund from a cost perspective, FIUIX is actually cheaper than its peers.

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, Fidelity Telecom/Utilities Fund ( FIUIX ) has a high Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively similar performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, this fund looks like a great potential choice for investors right now.

For additional information on the Mutual Fund Equity Report 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 FIUIX 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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