Top Investment Companies

Written by Shirley Parker
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Only individuals, and business or financial publications, with recognized credentials in the field of investing should attempt to label investment companies as being "top." Of course, there are many such companies with reputations for integrity and wise management that are household names. However, only licensed financial advisers or bona fide experts are qualified to recommend them to others. Doing otherwise is unethical and may be against the law.

Each investment company above a certain size (in assets managed) should be registered with the SEC. Some good firms may not qualify--for whatever reason--so dealing with them could possibly involve greater risk. Even so, each is undoubtedly registered in the state(s) where they do business, if not registered with the SEC. Some securities themselves are even exempt from registration, as are banks and members of certain professions.

Out of some 4,500 mutual funds, larger investment companies generally have selected a range of only top-performing funds for customers' investments. The size of the investment company, of course, is only one indicator among many as to competence. The funds will be domestic stock funds, including various types of large, mid-cap, and small funds. Usually, the investment company can also offer balanced and asset allocation funds, international stock funds, and bond funds--both taxables and municipals.

Sector Funds

Sector funds are an additional area for exploration by the investor ready for greater diversity. These include communications or health, precious metals or natural resources, real estate and technology. Utilities are worth consideration, since we can't live without them. However, recent energy crises have deeply hurt some shareholders and caution is wise. (That's a statement of fact, not advice.)

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