WHAT ARE WE LOOKING FOR?
The tech-heavy Nasdaq has still been among the hottest stock indexes in North America in the past 12 months. The Nasdaq composite is up 20 per cent in the last year even with the latest market downturn. Which science and technology funds are doing the best most recently and over the long term?
To find the funds with current momentum, we'll screen for those with the highest Globefund ratings. These ratings are calculated monthly and are based on measures that include a comparison of their monthly returns with the yield on ultra safe 90-day Government of Canada treasury bills. We'll also note the five-year returns of the funds on the list to highlight their consistency over a longer period.
SO WHAT DID WE TURN UP?
Put it this way: The club of hard-charging science and tech funds is a small one. No funds on our list qualified for a top five-star rating, and only four nailed a four-star rating. A superstar in the category is clearly Northwest Innovations, which has more than doubled the category average return of 7.04 per cent over the past five years. Interesting sidebar on this fund: Almost two-thirds of its assets were in Canadian stocks as of the most recent reporting date.
A few index products also found their way onto this list. One of them is TD Nasdaq Index, which tracks 100 of the largest, most liquid Nasdaq stocks and comes in a super low-fee "e"
version if you're willing to buy it online from TD or its discount brokerage division, TD Waterhouse. Another index product is the iShares Cdn Tech Sector Index Fund, an exchange-traded fund listed on the Toronto Stock
Exchange under the symbol XIT.
Low management expense
ratios are a standard benefit with index funds, but science and technology funds used to be such high fliers that no one much cared how much it cost to own them. Today, it's clear that low fees are an asset in this fund
category. The average MER for these funds is a fat 2.85 per cent and all the four-star performers on our list are below that. The
index funds, of course, are way below the average.
|Net assets (000s)||Last MER||% 5-yr return|
|Fund name||as of June 2007||reported date||MER||as of June 2007||Rating|
|Northwest Specialty Innovations||85,301||10/31/2006||2.71||19.79|
|TD Entertainment & Communications||166,588||6/29/2007||2.78||18.00|
|iShares CDN Tech Sector Index||104,834||6/29/2007||0.55||16.64|
|Fidelity Focus Telecommunications-B||11,745||3/30/2007||2.67||12.50|
|TD NASDAQ Index-I||82,579||6/29/2007||0.98||11.93|
|GGOF Global Technology Mutual||17,596||12/29/2006||2.74||10.45|
|Fidelity Focus Technology-B||58,673||3/30/2007||2.46||4.71|
|Mackenzie Univ Emerging Tech Class||6,697||6/30/2006||2.96||2.58|
|Investors Global Sci & Tech-C||6/29/2007||2.90||1.88|
|HSBC Global Technology-I||7,173||6/29/2007||2.93||0.62|
|AGF Global Technology Class||10,408||6/29/2007||3.50||-0.16|
|Altamira Science & Technology||55,023||6/29/2007||2.70||-0.70|
|Renaissance Global Technology||1,642||2/28/2007||2.91||4.44|
|Scotia Nasdaq Index||11,707||6/29/2007||1.03||4.42|
|CIBC Nasdaq Index RRSP||45,095||12/29/2006||1.18||4.35|
|CIBC Nasdaq Index||16,656||12/29/2006||1.16||4.35|
|CI Glb Science & Technology Corp Cl||161,892||6/29/2007||2.35||4.12|
|TD Science & Technology||119,694||6/29/2007||2.78||2.60|
|Frk Technology CC||10,886||6/29/2007||2.76||2.36|
|CIBC Global Technology||52,303||12/29/2006||2.90||1.91|
|Mackenzie Univ Wld Sci & Tec Class||93,214||6/30/2006||2.55||1.69|
|Talvest Global Sci & Tech||34,913||2/28/2007||2.90||1.68|
|National Bank Global Technologies||4,622||6/29/2007||2.72||0.00|
|Desjardins Global Science & Tech||13,093||1/31/2007||2.93||-0.07|
|AIM Global Technology||57,593||5/31/2007||3.14||-2.34|
|RBC Life Science & Technology||140,312||6/29/2007||3.00||-2.83|
|BMO Global Science and Technology||80,717||6/29/2007||2.60||-1.25|
© 2007 The Globe and Mail. All rights reserved.
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