Standard & Poor’s has launched a new U.S. Mutual Fund Excellence Awards program to recognize those funds that consistently achieve the highest ranking in S&P’s five-star rating system.

S&P equity research introduced its fund methodology in September 2009, taking a bottoms-up approach to a fund’s underlying stock, bond and other holdings, as well as performance, risk and cost factors. S&P also looks at credit ratings, fair value and quality rankings.

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