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If doubts about robust economic growth are prompting some advisers and clients to take profits from the large-cap portion of portfolios – note that the S&P 500 has returned more than 8% in less than five months this year – where should savvy advisers and investors look for other options?

Small-caps could be one idea. However, the sector tends to be more volatile than large-caps and has also turned in a strong performance, meaning prices are hardly cheap.

On the expense side, there are some small-cap funds that have low expense ratios, which we defined as 1% or less for this labor-intensive asset class. (A small handful have dirt-cheap expense ratios.) Indeed, expenses are the biggest differentiator in this case, since returns for all funds listed here are separated by less than two-and-a-half-percentage points.

We also screened out any funds with less than $100 million in assets and ranked the resulting list by their five-year returns.

All data from Morningstar.


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