Royce Special Equity Fund

Scorecard
3 / 5 Stars
Lipper
2 1 4 3 2
Zacks Investment Research
5 (Strong Sell)
Standard & Poor's
3 / 5 Stars
TheStreet.com
C (Hold)

U.S. News evaluated 229 Small Blend 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 15.43 percent over the past year, 13.34 percent over the past three years, 16.27 percent over the past five years, and 8.71 percent over the past decade. 

Trailing Returns Updated 06.30.2014
Year to date 0.2%
1 Year 15.4%
3 Years (Annualized) 13.3%
5 Years (Annualized) 16.3%
10 Years (Annualized) 8.7%

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Summary

Royce Special Equity holds up quite well under pressure.

As of July 03, 2014, the fund has assets totaling almost $3.34 billion invested in 48 different holdings. Its portfolio consists of shares of small and midsized companies.

Relative to its peers, this fund has had its best years in down markets. As such, it should come as no surprise that it lost 17 percentage points less than the broader market in 2008. Conversely, during market rallies, the fund is content to linger near the middle, and occasionally bottom, of the pack, and that's what it's been doing since 2009. One of the notable aspects of the fund's portfolio is its avoidance of financial services companies, which comprise 12 percent of the fund's benchmark, the Russell 2000. Meanwhile, the fund is filled with consumer cyclical names, which as of the end of the first quarter accounted for almost a third of its stock picks. Currently, the fund is overweight to both mid-cap and micro-cap companies. The fund has returned 15.43 percent over the past year and 13.34 percent over the past three years. 

Historically, this fund has earned a reputation for keeping things together during rough markets. In 2001, for instance, when the S&P 500 took a nosedive, this fund finished the year up 31 percent. But during rebounds, the fund can get lethargic. It spent 2003 and 2004, for instance, in the bottom 5 percent of its Morningstar category. Consequently, this isn't a fund for investors looking to cash out on short-term returns. But the fund's long-term numbers, coupled with the Royce family's stellar reputation in the small-cap universe, make it a solid option for those with longer time horizons. The fund has returned 16.27 percent over the past five years and 8.71 percent over the past decade.

Investment Strategy

According to the fund's prospectus: "The portfolio manager applies an intensive value approach in managing the Fund's assets. This approach, which attempts to combine classic value analysis, the identification of good businesses and accounting cynicism, has its roots in the teachings of Benjamin Graham and Abraham Briloff."

Role in Portfolio

Morningstar calls the fund a "supporting player."

Management

Charles Dreifus manages the fund.

Fees

Royce Special Equity Fund has an expense ratio of 1.01 percent. 

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Risk

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

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