Looking at Mutual Fund and ETF YTD Returns (interactive)

2015 has been a pretty trying year in the investment management industry. On the whole, both the median mutual fund and the median ETF have had negative performance through October. Of the 5395 mutual funds that we have performance for the median year-to-date performance is just -0.90% (average is -1.80%). The mutual fund space has at least performed better than the ETF space. Of the 1573 ETFs that we track the median performance is -3.1% (average is -6.0%).

In the interactive table below, we show the median performance of various mutual fund and ETF categories as categorized by Morningstar (note: the OE prefix in the mutual fund category titles simply means “open ended” mutual funds). We encourage our readers to filter through the various categories to see for themselves how different categories of mutual funds and ETFs have performed.

A few key highlights:

  • While you won’t find many home runs, for investors that are looking for positive returns the municipal bond category has been the place to be invested. The median performance of ALL mutual funds and ETFs in this category are positive YTD. Of the 8 category groups (allocation, alternatives, commodities, international equity, municipal bond, sector equity, taxable bond, and  US equity), only the municipal bond category can make this claim.
  • The overall best performing mutual fund or ETF category has been the Trading-Inverse Commodity ETF category (median performance – 23.4%).
  • The overall worst performing mutual fund or ETF category is also commodity related. The Trading-Leveraged Commodities ETF category has median performance of -40.1%.
  • International equity has outperformed US equity, in both ETFs and mutual funds.
  • International equity has also performed better than the sector equity category.
  • US large growth category is the only positive category YTD for US equity mutual funds.
  • Preferred stock has been by far the best performing taxable bond segment.