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Commentary

When It Comes to Funds, Read the Fine Print

Morningstar’s analysis of global disclosure practices serves as a reminder that there’s no excuse not to become an informed investor.

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Toward the end of 2020, Morningstar released the latest iteration of its Global Investor Experience study, with the chapter focused on Disclosure. I contributed to the study as the primary researcher and author for the section on the U.S. market. This study plays a valuable role in pushing the global fund industry toward best practices.

In this column, I’m using my work on the “2020 Global Investor Experience Study: Disclosure” as a jumping-off point to consider a more basic question: What does disclosure mean in the context of mutual funds, and why should it matter to investors? The truth is that disclosure practices aren’t just an abstract concept of concern to regulators and asset managers--they’re highly relevant and of tangible value to investors.

Josh Charlson does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.