No matter what kind of survey it is, there's nothing like being number one. Sadly, most mutual fund managers and their funds can't claim the top position that "Seinfeld" did for the past several TV seasons. And, fortunately for investors, fund managers don't generally command the fees that Jerry, Elaine, George and Kramer did. It's easy to rate a TV show as not very important (except to the sponsors), but when it comes to rating mutual funds, that's no laughing matter.
So what's the deal with all these fund ratings? I mean, it seems as if everybody is getting into the act. You expect it from publications like Business Week, Forbes, Barron's,Money, and The Wall Street Journal. But when you see a list in Golf Digest, you may find yourself chanting, "Serenity now!" as you pore over the lists. Which list is best? Which company provides the best service? You don't have to wait for Festivus to find out.
Lorayne Fiorillo is a financial advisor and first vice president of investments at Prudential Securities Inc. Past performance is no guarantee of future returns, yadda, yadda, yadda.