CHICAGO, June 9, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Morningstar, Inc. (NASDAQ: MORN), a leading provider of independent investment research, today announced Morningstar Analyst Rating™ changes for several U.S. funds. The Morningstar Analyst Rating for funds represents Morningstar's conviction in the fund's ability to outperform on a risk-adjusted basis over the long term. The five-tiered, qualitative Morningstar Analyst Rating scale has three positive levels, indicating Morningstar Medalists—Gold, Silver, and Bronze—in addition to Neutral and Negative ratings.
In May, Morningstar analysts upgraded three U.S. fund ratings, downgraded six fund ratings, and assigned 18 new ratings. As of May 31, 2014, 158 U.S. funds had a Morningstar Analyst Rating of Gold, 291 funds had a Silver rating, 313 funds were rated Bronze, 350 funds had a Neutral rating, and 40 funds were rated Negative. Approximately 10 percent of mutual funds available for sale in the United States are currently Morningstar Medalists. Morningstar's manager research team covers about $8 trillion of U.S. investor assets, which is equivalent to approximately 70 percent of total investor assets in the United States, as of March 31, 2014.
Morningstar upgraded the following U.S. mutual funds in May:
- BlackRock Basic Value Fund, upgraded to Bronze from Neutral
- Credit Suisse Commodity Return Strategy Fund, upgraded to Bronze from Neutral
- Wells Fargo Advantage Municipal Bond Fund, upgraded to Silver from Bronze
Morningstar downgraded the following U.S. mutual funds in May:
- Artisan Small Cap Value Fund, downgraded to Silver from Gold
- Eaton Vance Floating Rate Fund, downgraded to Silver from Gold
- Franklin High Yield Tax Free Income Fund, downgraded to Silver from Gold
- Litman Gregory Masters International Fund, downgraded to Silver from Gold
- Osterweis Fund, downgraded to Silver from Gold
- Schwab Core Equity Fund, downgraded to Neutral from Bronze
Morningstar assigned new Analyst Ratings for the following U.S. mutual funds in May:
- AllianzGI NFJ Dividend Value Fund—assigned new rating of Silver
- American Century Investments International Growth Fund—assigned new rating of Bronze
- Artisan Mid Cap Value Fund—assigned new rating of Gold
- Artisan Small Cap Value Fund—assigned new rating of Silver
- Fidelity Advisor® International Discovery Fund—assigned new rating of Bronze
- Fidelity Advisor® Mid Cap II Fund—assigned new rating of Bronze
- Janus Triton—assigned new rating of Neutral
- Loomis Sayles Small Cap Growth Fund—assigned new rating of Silver
- MFS® Global Equity Fund—assigned new rating of Gold
- Morgan Stanley Institutional Fund Trust Mid Cap Growth Portfolio—assigned new rating of Gold
- Mutual Global Discovery Fund—assigned new rating of Silver
- Nuveen Real Estate Securities Fund—assigned new rating of Bronze
- Oppenheimer Main Street Fund—assigned new rating of Bronze
- Schwab Dividend Equity Fund—assigned new rating of Neutral
- Templeton Global Bond Fund—assigned new rating of Gold
- Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund—assigned new rating of Gold
- Vanguard Small Cap Index Fund—assigned new rating of Gold
- Wells Fargo Advantage Asset Allocation Fund—assigned new rating of Neutral
A summary of last month's Morningstar Analyst Rating upgrades and downgrades for U.S. mutual funds is available on Morningstar.com in the latest Fund Spy: Medalist Edition here.
Morningstar launched its Analyst Rating for funds and Global Fund Reports in November 2011. Morningstar Medalists—Gold-, Silver-, and Bronze-rated funds—are funds that analysts determine are likely to outperform their peer groups and/or relevant benchmarks on a risk-adjusted basis over a market cycle of at least five years. The differences between the positive Medalist ratings indicate the level of the analyst's conviction in a fund's future performance. Analysts arrive at a rating through an evaluation of five key pillars: People, Process, Parent, Performance, and Price. The Analyst Rating methodology is available here.
To view a complete list and supporting analysis for Analyst Ratings for U.S. funds, please visit www.morningstar.com. Premium Members have access to a Morningstar Medalists screener, where users can sort funds by Morningstar Rating, Morningstar Analyst Rating, Fund Family, Manager Tenure, Expense Ratio, and other metrics. Morningstar's Global Fund Reports, in-depth research reports that include a wealth of data and analysis, are available in Morningstar DirectSM, the company's web-based global investment analysis platform for institutional investor, and in Morningstar OfficeSM, a global practice and portfolio management solution for advisors.
Morningstar has about 110 manager research analysts worldwide who cover approximately 4,300 funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs). The company provides data on approximately 160,200 open-end mutual funds, 7,400 closed-end funds, and 10,700 exchange-traded funds as of March 31, 2014.
About Morningstar, Inc. Morningstar, Inc. is a leading provider of independent investment research in North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia. The company offers an extensive line of products and services for individual investors, financial advisors, asset managers, and retirement plan providers and sponsors. Morningstar provides data on approximately 456,000 investment offerings, including stocks, mutual funds, and similar vehicles, along with real-time global market data on more than 12 million equities, indexes, futures, options, commodities, and precious metals, in addition to foreign exchange and Treasury markets. Morningstar also offers investment management services through its registered investment advisor subsidiaries and had approximately $164 billion in assets under advisement and management as of March 31, 2014. The company has operations in 27 countries.
Analyst Ratings are subjective in nature and should not be used as the sole basis for investment decisions. Analyst Ratings are based on Morningstar analysts' current expectations about future events and therefore involve unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause Morningstar's expectations not to occur or to differ significantly from what was expected. Morningstar does not represent its Analyst Ratings to be guarantees nor should they be viewed as an assessment of a fund's or the fund's underlying securities' creditworthiness. This press release is for informational purposes only; it should not be considered an offer or solicitation to buy or sell the mutual funds noted within.
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