YOUR FUND IS NOT UP TO PAR

YOU EXPECT THE PROS TO BEAT THE MARKET MOST OF THE TIME. MOST OF THE TIME, THEY DON'T

You wouldn't bet your retirement savings on a 1-in-5 chance--or would you? Check your latest mutual-fund statement. You may be gambling more than you know.

One of the fund industry's not-so-funny little quirks is that most stock-fund managers can't beat important benchmarks like the Standard & Poor's 500, even though they try with all their might. That index represents the average stock. In theory, half of all funds should beat it while half fall short. In reality, in the past 10 years only 20% of diversified, actively managed U.S. stock funds have done better. Laggards include big names such as Income...

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