spirit11,rustedsoul said most of what needs to be said, but I can't resist adding a little emphasis. Several Janus funds have been good performers for several years; and may well continue for a few more years, who knows.The reason Fools like index funds, particularly Vanguard's VFINX is that it has done very well for decades. Particularly when you look at it on an after tax basis. Funds like Janus Mercury or Fidelity Magellan do great for five or even ten years, then they lag. Then sometimes they come back, sometimes not.The nice thing about VFINX is that you can let your profits run for decades and never need to switch and pay taxes. It's a conservative choice, but a darned good one. (Admittedly this argument is irrelevant in an IRA.)As part of your reading, you might want to get a copy of John Bogel's COMMON SENSE ON MUTUAL FUNDS from your local library.Cheers,GW
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