Dodge & Cox International Stock: Steady Excellence
Editor's note: This is part of a continuing series of articles looking at the 20 biggest no-load stock funds.
Fund management the Dodge & Cox way means subjecting portfolio companies and candidates to intensive, exhaustive research. When the San Francisco firm's analysts and fund managers studied U.S. corporations in the 1990s, they noticed that a growing share of their earnings was coming from abroad as a result of a globalizing world economy. So they began to spend time studying foreign companies to better understand their U.S. rivals. Out of this grew Dodge & Cox International Stock, launched in 2001.
This fund has been a roaring success. Dodge & Cox International has ranked within the top 30% of its international category in each of the past five years, gaining 21% annualized during that period, an average of seven percentage points per year ahead of its peers. International bears the hallmarks of the other Dodge & Cox funds: solid results, modest portfolio turnover and low fund expenses.
What you get with Dodge & Cox International is a nicely diversified fund containing some of the world's best businesses; for example, HSBC Holdings, Nokia, GlaxoSmithKline and Hitachi are among the fund's top ten positions. And here's the best news: unlike Dodge & Cox Stock and Balanced funds, International is still open to new investors.
Foreign stocks or funds should probably account for at least 20% to 25% of your stock exposure. If you're below that benchmark, Dodge & Cox International makes a fine addition. The fund, along with Dodge & Cox Income, is a member of the Kiplinger 25. We rate the fund a BUY.
Dodge & Cox Stock (DODFX)
*Returns through Dec. 31 Fund Fact sources: Standard & Poor's, Morningstar
View updated data for this fund and compare the performance of the 20 biggest no-load stock funds.