How many active mutual funds have beaten the S&P 500 in 8 consecutive years?

How many active mutual funds have beaten the S&P 500 in each of the last 8 consecutive years?

Four.

Here’s Chuck Jaffe at Marketwatch, who is jeopardizing a lot of ad dollars for the parent company by saying this:

Today, even the most ardent fund investor would have a tough time knowing which fund and/or manager has the longest streak of topping the S&P.

In fact, just four actively managed funds — Fidelity Select Health Care, Fidelity Advisor Health Care, T. Rowe Price Health Sciences and VALIC Company I Health Sciences  —have current streaks of eight consecutive calendar years of beating the S&P 500, according to Morningstar.

All are in the health-care sector — which accounts for seven of the 16 funds with active streaks of beating the index for at least four straight calendar years — suggesting that assets are a bigger factor than management in making the funds shine.

…by the way, the two Fidelity funds have the same manager, so it’s three managers who have topped the S&P 500 in each of the last eight years. And they were all in the hottest sector in the entire market, which easily crushed the S&P 500 itself without so much as a hiccup.

Many active stock picking managers make the claim that they require at least a full cycle for their expertise to really shine through. Some will make their bones in the up-times while others will manage risk better than the market in the down-times. Okay, that’s fair. But isn’t eight consecutive years a full cycle, replete with recessions, booms, high rates, low rates, etc?

You can make the point that it’s not W’s and L’s by year that matters, rather, it’s the overall performance for the entire period. Fair point. But still.

I’m sure the next eight years will be better though. I’ve been told this by many gentlemen in expensive suits.

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