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Investing Specialists

Morningstar Runs the Numbers

We take a numerical look through this week's Morningstar research. Plus, our most popular articles and videos for the week ended Feb. 16.

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Inspired by Harper's Index (with a tip of the hat to FiveThirtyEight's Significant Digits blog), Morningstar Runs the Numbers uses a numbers-based approach to highlight recent Morningstar research, along with some outside news stories.

The markets enjoyed a strong rally in 2017, but volatility has returned in 2018, and more rocky markets could be on the way, with tax law changes and a lot of turnover at the Fed in the mix, warns director of manager research Russ Kinnel. He lists 12 fund picks for today's market and beyond.

After laying low for several quarters, inflation is again on investors' list of worries. While it's not a given that every investor needs to have an allocation to inflation-protected bonds, investors who are nearing retirement or those who are already drawing income from their retirement portfolios might have a growing need to preserve their long-term purchasing power. In that vein, we put together this list of 10 Medalist funds and exchange-traded funds in the inflation-protected bond category.

Many of us are familiar with the five interlocking rings that have been the official symbol of the Olympics since the early 1900s. But do you know what they stand for? Mental Floss gives a brief history

It is easier, and often more important, to avoid mistakes than to identify great investment ideas, says Alex Bryan, director of passive strategies for North America. Among the low-hanging fruit, you can improve your odds of success by steering clear of funds that exhibit these three traits.  

Director of policy research Aron Szapiro explains that one way Congress plans to keep the costs of  the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act to $1.5 trillion over 10 years is by accounting for inflation by using a different metric. Going forward, instead of adjusting for inflation with the traditional measure--the consumer price index for all urban consumers--Congress will use "chained CPI," which government scorekeepers expect to grow about 0.25% slower than traditional CPI, Szapiro said.

After a complacent 2017, liquid alternative funds have had a chance to show their mettle or lack thereof. From Jan. 26 through Feb. 8, the Dow Jones Industrial Index fell 10%. That's a short period, but it's the type of painful decline that liquid alts are designed to help alleviate, says senior manager research analyst Jason Kephart. He takes a category-by-category look at how liquid alternative categories and our medalists performed during the correction.

Most Popular Articles 

Most Popular Videos 

Most Requested Stock Quotes
Wells Fargo

Most Requested Fund Quotes
Vanguard 500 Index
Dodge & Cox Stock
Fidelity Contrafund
Vanguard Total Stock Market Index
T. Rowe Price Blue Chip Growth

Most Requested ETF Quotes
Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF
Vanguard S&P 500 ETF
Vanguard REIT ETF
PowerShares QQQ does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.