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The Short Answer

What's Behind the Morningstar Ratings?

There's more to the Morningstar Rating systems for funds, ETFs, and stocks than how many stars you see.

Question: What are the key differences between your star ratings for mutual funds, stocks, and exchange-traded funds?

Answer: Finding the right investments can be a daunting process. To help alleviate the burden of choice overload, Morningstar has created an array of tools to help investors assess an investment's key characteristics at a glance.

The Morningstar Style Box for mutual funds, for example, helps you quickly see how a fund actually invests the bulk of its assets. Meanwhile, the Morningstar Rating for funds, introduced in 1985, helps investors quickly gauge how a fund has balanced risk and reward. We've since introduced star ratings for individual stocks and exchange-traded funds.