Wiener is the leading source of independent advice on
the Vanguard family of funds. His top 2003 pick, the conservative growth
and income play, Vanguard Selected Value, returned 32%. For this year, he
looks for a rebound in the healthcare
top pick for 2004 is Vanguard Health Care (VGHCX).
the biotechnology sector has been red hot in 2003, large pharmaceutical makers
are poised for a rebound in 2004. Development pipelines are beginning to
look stronger, the new Medicare pharmaceutical benefits will be a boon, and attractive
dividend yields all combine to make the drug companies look darned appetizing.
Plus, the oldest of the massive baby-boom generation are in their late
50's and are spending freely on everything from artificial knees and
hips to liposuction and cholesterol-lowering drugs."
is a growth industry. To that end, Vanguard Health Care, run by
Wellington Management's Ed Owens, is a fabulous play. The fund's long-term
record is market-beating in every respect, the manager has been on board since
its 1984 inception, and unlike most sector funds, Health Care's volatility is
actually lower than the overall market's. Owens has been finding stocks in
far-away markets including Japan's, where he says the drug companies are
relatively undervalued. The fund's only drawback is its $25,000 minimum. If you
can't afford this, try Icon Health Care (ICHCX)."