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Is Franklin Real Estate Security A (FREEX) a Strong Mutual Fund Pick Right Now?

Mutual Fund Report for FREEX

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This story originally appeared on Zacks

Any investors hoping to find a Mutual Fund Equity Report fund could think about starting with Franklin Real Estate Security A (FREEX). FREEX bears a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 3 (Hold), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

- Zacks

History of Fund/Manager

Franklin Templeton is based in San Mateo, CA, and is the manager of FREEX. Since Franklin Real Estate Security A made its debut in January of 1994, FREEX has garnered more than $375.40 million in assets. Daniel Scher is the fund's current manager and has held that role since May of 2014.

Performance

Obviously, what investors are looking for in these funds is strong performance relative to their peers. This fund has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 10.44%, and is in the top third among its category peers. If you're interested in shorter time frames, do not dismiss looking at the fund's 3-year annualized total return of 14.16%, which places it in the top third during this time-frame.

When looking at a fund's performance, it is also important to note the standard deviation of the returns. The lower the standard deviation, the less volatility the fund experiences. FREEX's standard deviation over the past three years is 17.74% compared to the category average of 16.06%. Looking at the past 5 years, the fund's standard deviation is 15.2% compared to the category average of 13.36%. This makes the fund more volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

The fund has a 5-year beta of 0.75, so investors should note that it is hypothetically less volatile than the market at large. Another factor to consider is alpha, as it reflects a portfolio's performance on a risk-adjusted basis relative to a benchmark-in this case, the S&P 500. FREEX's 5-year performance has produced a negative alpha of -2.37, which means managers in this portfolio find it difficult to pick securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

Expenses

As competition heats up in the mutual fund market, costs become increasingly important. Compared to its otherwise identical counterpart, a low-cost product will be an outperformer, all other things being equal. Thus, taking a closer look at cost-related metrics is vital for investors. In terms of fees, FREEX is a load fund. It has an expense ratio of 1.07% compared to the category average of 1.22%. From a cost perspective, FREEX is actually cheaper than its peers.

Investors need to be aware that with this product, the minimum initial investment is $1,000; each subsequent investment has no minimum amount.

Bottom Line

Overall, Franklin Real Estate Security A ( FREEX ) has a neutral Zacks Mutual Fund rank, and in conjunction with its comparatively strong performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, Franklin Real Estate Security A ( FREEX ) looks like a somewhat average choice for investors right now.

Your research on the Mutual Fund Equity Report segment doesn't have to stop here. You can check out all the great mutual fund tools we have to offer by going to www.zacks.com/funds/mutual-funds to see the additional features we offer as well for additional information. Zacks provides a full suite of tools to help you analyze your portfolio - both funds and stocks - in the most efficient way possible.



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