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Fund Spy

Shades of Value at a Top Fund Shop

An impressive strategy runs through Mutual Series, but the funds have key distinctions, as well.

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One of the most appealing attributes at the Mutual Series group of funds is a cohesive investment culture and strategy that transcends time, market conditions, and portfolio managers.

That kind of continuity should help the funds' investors set appropriate expectations and maintain a familiarity with all of the portfolios, even through manager changes (many of which have occurred here during the past 15 years or so). It's helped the four older, more diversified funds ( Mutual Shares (TESIX),  Mutual Beacon (TEBIX),  Mutual Quest (TEQIX), and  Mutual Global Discovery (TEDIX)) turn in 10-year performance figures at or in their respective categories' best quartiles.

In the past decade, which included two bear markets and during which the S&P 500 Index notched a meager 2.5% annualized return, the funds collectively have benefited from their sensitivity to valuation and focus on cash flow, dividends, and share buybacks. More specifically, hefty stakes in foreign companies, big weightings in cash-rich tobacco stocks, merger-arbitrage tactics, and occasional retreats to cash as markets peaked proved smart.

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