6. Dodge & Cox Stock (DODGX)-- 6.3% return, 34 rank
All three are good representatives of Dodge's value style. The fund favors companies with strong positions but shares that are cheap because they seem to be at a low, cyclical ebb.
Dodge bets on a comeback and figures the low valuations will provide some downside protection if the bet is wrong.
7. Fidelity Growth Company (FDGRX)-- 10.2% return, 3 rank
Steven Wymer's fund is the star performer of our group of 10, with a double-digit gain for the first six months of the year. Wymer got there by taking on more risk than any other fund on the list, and it paid off.
The closed fund sports names, such as apparel maker Lululemon Athletica (LULU, news), software supplier Salesforce.com (CRM, news), Linux distributor Red Hat (RHT, news) and drug-maker Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN, news), that you won't see in the other portfolios.
Not surprisingly, the fund also led this group of giants in the snapback year of 2009. Wymer buys smaller, faster-growing companies than you'll find in the other funds here.
8. Vanguard Windsor II (VWNFX)-- 6.9% return, 26 rank
Lead manager Jim Barrow plays an extreme version of the Dodge & Cox strategy. He likes stuff that's really cheap and really battered. Yet interestingly, he's got some of the same names you'll find in the Dodge & Cox fund, such as Pfizer. You know Pfizer has fallen a long way when the former growth darling makes it into Barrow's portfolio.
9. Fidelity Low-Priced Stock (FLPSX)-- 8.6% return, 22 rank
Joel Tillinghast was in the middle of the mid-blend pack at the end of May, but then the market hit an air pocket. He finished the first half in the top quartile, because his defensive strategy tends to lose less in down markets.
As usual, it's an eclectic group of names that pushed this 800-stock portfolio to outperformance. Names such as insurer UnitedHealth Group (UNH, news) and fashion accessories provider Fossil (FOSL, news) led the charge.
10. Vanguard Primecap (VPMCX)-- 5.5% return, 54 rank
The growth stalwarts at this closed fund are having a middling year despite a big health care bet. While Biogen Idec (BIIB, news) has been a big winner, names such as Amgen (AMGN, news) and Roche (RHHBY, news) have been dull. Moreover, this is another fund that sustained that one-two punch from Google and Microsoft.
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[BRIEFING.COM] A solid November employment report translated into a solid day of gains for the major averages. While there was some talk that the encouraging job growth raised the odds of the Fed announcing a tapering at its December meeting, the message of the markets today was either that it didn't believe there would be a tapering this month or that it doesn't fear a tapering this month.
It was just one day, yet there was ample meaning wrapped up in the connection that the 10-yr ... More
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