Neuberger Berman Guardian Fund

Scorecard
3 / 5 Stars
Lipper
3 4 4 5 2
Zacks Investment Research
5 (Strong Sell)
Standard & Poor's
3 / 5 Stars
TheStreet.com
C+ (Hold)

U.S. News evaluated 465 Large Growth Funds. Our list highlights the top-rated funds for long-term investors based on the ratings of leading fund industry researchers.

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Note: Profile written for different share class.

Performance

The fund has returned 21.03 percent over the past year, 12.27 percent over the past three years, 20.49 percent over the past five years, and 8.14 percent over the past decade. 

Trailing Returns Updated 03.31.2014
Year to date -0.2%
1 Year 21.0%
3 Years (Annualized) 12.3%
5 Years (Annualized) 20.5%
10 Years (Annualized) 8.1%

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Summary

Neuberger Berman Guardian has done a fine job of watching over the market.

As of April 22, 2014, the fund has assets totaling almost $1.46 billion invested in 38 different holdings. Its portfolio consists primarily of shares of large and midsized companies.

So far in 2011, the fund has favored financial services companies. But happily for investors, it has largely stayed away from struggling banks. Instead, its exposure to the sector comes largely from investment shops (BlackRock and Charles Schwab), insurers (Progressive), and credit card companies (MasterCard). Meanwhile, the fund has significant positions in some defensive consumer names such as Procter & Gamble and Target. The fund's exposure to healthcare companies also gives the portfolio a bit of a defensive posture. After strong performance in 2009 and 2010, the fund has been fairly steady so far this year. The fund has returned 21.03 percent over the past year and 12.27 percent over the past three years. 

Overall, this fund's portfolio tends to be fairly compact. As of the end of May, for instance, 10 holdings combined for 40 percent of the fund's assets. Management exercises a buy-and-hold discipline, as evidenced by the fund's 36 percent turnover ratio. By comparison, a fund that replenished all of its assets once a year would have a ratio of 100 percent. Whereas the fund's peers in Morningstar's large-blend category tend to focus on huge, mega-cap companies, this fund's management team has shown a willingness to dig a bit further down into the market-cap spectrum. The fund has returned 20.49 percent over the past five years and 8.14 percent over the past decade. 

Investment Strategy

According to the fund's prospectus: "The Portfolio Managers employ a research driven and valuation sensitive approach to stock selection, with a long term perspective. They look for solid balance sheets, strong management teams with a track record of success, good cash flow and the prospect for above average earnings growth. They seek to purchase the stock of businesses that they believe to be well positioned and undervalued by the market." 

Role in Portfolio

Morningstar calls the fund a "core" holding.

Management

A team of four managers runs the fund.

Fees

Neuberger Berman Guardian Fund has an expense ratio of 0.90 percent. 

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Risk

Like all stock funds, this one comes with some risks.

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