Actively managed portfolios continued to outperform index funds, with the average S&P 500 index fund up just 6.15% for the month and 3.64% year-to-date.
August returns were a remarkable turnaround from July when the average US equity fund lost 1.71%.
For the month, funds investing in mid-sized firms were the strongest, outperforming all other types of portfolios as mid-cap core, growth and value funds all posted double-digit returns for the month and year-to-date.
The leading sectors in August were:
- 15.34% – Technology funds (up 14.65% year-to-date)
- 12.14% – Natural resources funds (down 4.20% year-to-date)
- 11.84% – Biotechnology funds, up 11.84 percent (up 51.09%)
- 9.01% – Financial services (up 14.52% year-to-date)
- 6.70% – Telecommunications (down 2.51% year-to-date)
- 6.64% – Utility funds (up 7.42% for the year)
Real estate funds were the only sector funds to lose ground during the month, slipping 2.23% in August. Still, they are up a strong 17.93% year-to-date.
Month-to-date, the Dow rose 6.59%, the S&P 500 tacked on 6.07%, the Russell 2000 gained 7.44%, and the NASDAQ surged 11.66%.
Year-to-date the S&P 500 is up 3.3%, the NASDAQ up 3.37% and the Russell 2000 is up 6.57%. The Dow is still 2.45% in the “red.”