Twice a year, S&P Dow Jones Indices releases a research report that addresses the question of whether the top performing mutual funds of the past are able to continue to outperform their peers in the future. To no surprise, the June 2014 edition of the “S&P Persistence Scorecard” again showed that consistently beating the market year after year was very difficult. Starting with the top performing quartile of actively managed domestic stock funds in 2010 (2,862 funds), only two of them happened to remain in the top 25% through each of the next four years. Before you conclude that these funds have the best managers out there, it’s important to note that random chance would suggest that eleven companies would have remained. The take-aways? According to Jeff Sommer in Who Routinely Trounces the Stock Market? 1) Beating the market is at least difficult enough that it does not justify the extra cost and 2) Past performance is not an indication of future results.