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7. Investing in Mutual Funds > Comparison-Shop for Mutual Funds

Comparison-Shop for Mutual Funds

Picking the best mutual fund for your investment goals can not only increase your investment returns, but also reduce your portfolio maintenance efforts down the road.

Finding the right mutual fund isn’t just about the numbers. True, a big part of choosing the best mutual fund is comparing numbers between contenders. However, some answers are found only by reading the fund prospectus and judging for yourself. Because mutual funds represent a collection of stocks, bonds, or other types of securities, the criteria you evaluate are much different than those for the underlying individual investments. Therefore, to do this right, you’ll need a mutual fund checklist, so you compare mutual funds fairly and don’t leave out anything important. The mutual fund data you need is readily available online, although you might have to tap several web sites to find everything you want [Hack #14] . In addition, some web sites offer online fund comparison tools that make it easier to make a decision, but each of these tools has small drawbacks [Hack #72] . Fortunately, it’s easy to build your own checklist and comparison spreadsheet to evaluate qualitative and quantitative criteria alike.


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