LTHIX - AllianceBern 2020 Retirement Strat I

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AllianceBern 2020 Retirement Strat I (LTHIX)
Expense Ratio: 0.72%
Expected Lifetime Fees: $22,073.95

The AllianceBern 2020 Retirement Strat I fund (LTHIX) is a Target Date 2016-2020 fund started on 9/1/2005 and has $283.30 million in assets under management. The current manager has been running AllianceBern 2020 Retirement Strat I since 9/23/2005. The fund is rated by Morningstar. This fund does not charge 12b-1 fees.

MarketRiders Prefers The Following ETF

iShares S&P Target Date 2020 (TZG)
Expense Ratio: 0.11%
Expected Lifetime Fees: $3,595.26

The iShares S&P Target Date 2020 (TZG) is an Exchange Traded Fund. It is a "basket" of securities that index the Target Date 2016-2020 investment strategy and is an alternative to a Target Date 2016-2020 mutual fund. Fees are very low compared to a comparable mutual fund like AllianceBern 2020 Retirement Strat I because computers automatically manage the stocks.

The Following Target Date 2016-2020 Funds Have Lower Fees Than AllianceBern 2020 Retirement Strat I (LTHIX). Why are these metrics important?
Mutual Fund Name Ticker Symbol Turnover Assets (M) Annual Fees
American Century LIVESTRONG 2020 Instl ARBSX 4.0% 615 0.61%
American Funds Trgt Date Ret 2020 R5 RECTX 7.0% 2,100 0.44%
American Funds Trgt Date Ret 2020 R6 RRCTX 7.0% 2,100 0.39%
Fidelity Advisor Freedom 2020 I FDIFX 18.0% 2,700 0.66%
Russell LifePoints 2020 Strategy R1 RLLRX 24.0% 240 0.70%
Russell LifePoints 2020 Strategy S RLLSX 24.0% 240 0.70%
Russell LifePoints 2020 Strategy S RLSSZ 24.0% 240 0.70%
Schwab Target 2020 SWCRX 15.0% 284 0.68%
T. Rowe Price Retirement 2020 TRRBX 15.6% 14,300 0.69%
Vanguard Target Retirement 2020 Inv VTWNX 23.0% 14,000 0.17%
Wells Fargo Advantage DJ Target 2020 I WFOBX 35.0% 2,300 0.50%

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Why Are These Metrics Important?

Turnover represents how much of a mutual fund's holdings are changed over the course of a year through buying and selling. Active mutual funds have an average turnover rate of about 85%, meaning that funds are turning over nearly all of their holdings every year. A high turnover means you could make lower returns because: 1) buying and selling stocks costs money through commissions and spreads and 2) the fund will distribute yearly capital gains which increases your taxes. Look for funds with turnover rates below 50%. For comparison, ETF turnover rates average around 10% or lower.

Generally, smaller funds do better than larger ones. The more assets in a mutual fund, the lower the chance that it will beat its index. Managers outperform an index by choosing stocks that are undervalued. In order to find these undervalued stocks, the manager has to know more than his competitors to develop an "edge." There are only a finite number of stocks a mutual fund manager can reasonably analyze and actively track to gain such a competitive edge. When the fund has more assets, the manager must analyze large companies because he needs to take larger positions. Large companies are more efficiently priced in the market and it becomes increasingly difficult to get an edge.