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

mutual Fund Equity Report fund seekers may want to consider taking a look at Franklin Real Estate Security A (FREEX). FREEX holds a Zacks Mutual Fund Rank of 3 (Hold), which is based on nine forecasting factors like size, cost, and past performance.

History of Fund/Manager

Franklin Templeton is responsible for FREEX, and the company is based out of San Mateo, CA. Since Franklin Real Estate Security A made its debut in January of 1994, FREEX has garnered more than $334.43 million in assets. The fund’s current manager, Daniel Scher, has been in charge of the fund since May of 2014.

Performance

Of course, investors look for strong performance in funds. This fund in particular has delivered a 5-year annualized total return of 8.29%, and it sits in the middle 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 8.39%, which places it in the middle 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. Compared to the category average of 16.18%, the standard deviation of FREEX over the past three years is 18.48%. The fund’s standard deviation over the past 5 years is 16.72% compared to the category average of 14.25%. This makes the fund more volatile than its peers over the past half-decade.

Risk Factors

Investors should note that the fund has a 5-year beta of 0.77, so it is likely going to be less volatile than the market at large. Alpha is an additional metric to take into consideration, since it represents a portfolio’s performance on a risk-adjusted basis relative to a benchmark, which in this case, is the S&P 500. FREEX has generated a negative alpha over the past five years of – 1.53, demonstrating that managers in this portfolio find it difficult to pick securities that generate better-than-benchmark returns.

Expenses

For investors, taking a closer look at cost-related metrics is key, since costs are increasingly important for mutual fund investing. Competition is heating up in this space, and a lower cost product will likely outperform its otherwise identical counterpart, all things being equal. In terms of fees, FREEX is a load fund. It has an expense ratio of 1.08% compared to the category average of 1.20%. From a cost perspective, FREEX is actually cheaper than its peers.

Investors should also note that the minimum initial investment for the product is $1,000 and that 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 similar performance, average downside risk, and lower fees, this fund looks like a somewhat average choice for investors right now.

Want some more information about FREEX? Then go over to Zacks.com and check out our mutual fund comparison tool, and all of the other great features that we have to help you with your mutual fund analysis for additional information. If you want to check out our stock reports as well, make sure to go to Zacks.com to see all of the great tools we have to offer, including our time-tested Zacks Rank.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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