Active Share and Mutual Fund Performance

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Financial Analysts Journal
July/August 2013 | Vol. 69 | No. 4 | 21 pages
Source: CFA Institute
Antti Petajisto

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Summary

Using Active Share and tracking error, the author sorted all-equity mutual funds into various categories of active management. The most active stock pickers outperformed their benchmark indices even after fees, whereas closet indexers underperformed. These patterns held during the 2008–09 financial crisis and within market-cap styles. Closet indexing has increased in both volatile and bear markets since 2007. Cross-sectional dispersion in stock returns positively predicts performance by stock pickers.

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