Morningstar’s Revamped Ratings Deliver Hit to Active Funds

The rating agency Morningstar has spruced up its rating system, which “hasn’t proved to be very predictive for future performance and volatility” and has “lost its luster because of the indexing craze.” This according to an article in Barron’s. The article reports that the revised system applies a zero-fee benchmark hurdle when analyzing funds which, while helpful to investors, will hurt managers. According to the firm’s head of global manager research Jeffrey Ptak, of the… Read More

Morningstar Incorporates Artificial Intelligence into New Ratings

Earlier this month, Morningstar introduced new quantitative ratings that will cover more than 10,000 funds and ETFs. The system will use both machine learning and artificial intelligence to “learn from the rating produced by Morningstar’s analysts.” This according to an article in InvestmentNews. “Essentially,” the article reports, “the program will adjust its ratings to learn from mistakes—and incorporate improvements—made by its human counterparts.” The development stems in part from the increased workload experienced by the… Read More

Bloomberg’s Kaissar Weighs-In on Morningstar Fund Ratings

In a recent article, Bloomberg columnist Nir Kaissar challenges the rationale of a Wall Street Journal article suggesting that Morningstar mutual fund ratings lead investors to “assume erroneously” how those funds will perform in the future. “That analysis is flawed,” Kaissar writes. “Morningstar awards stars for beating peers, not the market. Given that the vast majority of funds lose to the market, highly rated funds may not be delivering any value to investors. Buying the… Read More

Some Thoughts On Improving the Predictive Value of Morningstar’s Ratings

By Jack M. Forehand (@practicalquant) —  The Wall Street Journal article last week that called into question the predictive value of Morningstar star ratings has caused a lot of debate in the investment industry. Many investors rely on Morningstar ratings to select funds and believe that selecting five star funds gives them the best chance of future outperformance. The Journal article shows that relying on those ratings to predict future performance is probably a bad… Read More

Morningstar Ratings and Future Fund Performance

In a recent paper published by the firm’s quantitative research team, the Morningstar Rating, also known as the “star rating”, is summarized and evaluated with respect to accuracy. Morningstar now publishes star ratings on more than 217,000 managed investments across 72 countries. The rating system was introduced in 1985 to help investors and advisors better understand and assess the “crowded mutual fund landscape.” It evaluates the performance of a variety of funds (on a risk-adjusted… Read More