How do I research a mutual fund?
Google. Yes, the same search engine that helps you shop for your spouse's anniversary gift and gives you the dirt on your ex can also help you invest. But first decide on your goal. Is the money for the long term and retirement or a short-term goal, like to buy a house? Find a fund that's in sync with your needs and has reasonable fees. For lists of funds, go to morningstar.com, which is a handy financial website. Now comes the Google part. Plug the fund's name into a search engine and see what kind of information comes up (research the fund manager too). Also, you should look into a broad balanced fund (with stocks and bonds), such as American Funds Balanced or Pacific Advantage Balanced.