The Small Cap Blend style ranks ninth in Q118.

Based on an aggregation of ratings of 46 ETFs and 897 mutual funds.

EZM is our top-rated Small Cap Blend ETF and HSMFX is our top-rated Small Cap Blend mutual fund.

The Small Cap Blend style ranks ninth out of the twelve fund styles as detailed in ourQ118 Style Ratings for ETFs and Mutual st quarter, the Small Cap Blend style ranked tenth. It gets our Unattractive rating, which is based on an aggregation of ratings of 46 ETFs and 897 mutual funds in the Small Cap Blend style. See a recap of ourQ417 Style Ratings here.

Figures 1 and 2 show the best and worst rated ETFs and mutual funds in the style. Not all Small Cap Blend style ETFs and mutual funds are created the same. The number of holdings varies widely (from 21 to 3124). This variation creates drastically different investment implications and, therefore, ratings.

Investors seeking exposure to the Small Cap Blend style should buy one of the Attractive-or-better rated ETFs or mutual funds from Figures 1 and 2.

OurRobo-Analyst technologyempowers our uniqueETF and mutual fund rating methodology, which leverages our rigorous analysis of each funds holdings.[1]We think advisors and investors focused on prudent investment decisions should include analysis of fund holdings in their research process for ETFs and mutual funds.

Figure 1: ETFs with the Best & Worst Ratings Top 5

* Best ETFs exclude ETFs with TNAs less than $100 million for inadequate liquidity.

Sources: New Constructs, LLC and company filings

Seven ETFs are excluded from Figure 1 because their total net assets (NYSEARCA:TNA) are below $100 million and do not meet our liquidity minimums.

Figure 2: Mutual Funds with the Best & Worst Ratings Top 5

* Best mutual funds exclude funds with TNAs less than $100 million for inadequate liquidity.

Sources: New Constructs, LLC and company filings

WisdomTree U.S. MidCap Earnings Fund (EZM) is the top-rated Small Cap Blend ETF and Hartford Small Cap Core Fund (HSMFX) is the top-rated Small Cap Blend mutual fund. EZM earns an Attractive rating and HSMFX earns a Very Attractive rating.

PowerShares Russell 2000 Equal Weight Portfolio (EQWS) is the worst rated Small Cap Blend ETF and Small Cap ProFund (SLPSX) is the worst rated Small Cap Blend mutual fund. EQWS earns an Unattractive rating and SLPSX earns a Very Unattractive rating.

Buying a fund without analyzing its holdings is like buying a stock without analyzing its business and finances. Put another way, research on fund holdings is necessary due diligence because a funds performance is only as good as its holdings performance. Dont just take our word for it,see what Barrons sayson this matter.

Analyzing each holding within funds is no small task. Our Robo-Analyst technology enables us to perform this diligence with scale and provide the research needed to fulfill the fiduciary duty of care. More of the biggest names in the financial industry (seeAt BlackRock, Machines Are Rising Over Managers to Pick Stocks) are now embracing technology to leverage machines in the investment research process. Technology may be the only solution to the dual mandate for research: cut costs and fulfill the fiduciary duty of care. Investors, clients, advisors and analysts deserve the latest in technology to get the diligence required to make prudent investment decisions.

Figures 3 and 4 show the rating landscape of all Small Cap Blend ETFs and mutual funds.

Figure 3: Separating the Best ETFs From the Worst Funds

Sources: New Constructs, LLC and company filings

Figure 4: Separating the Best Mutual Funds from the Worst Funds

Sources: New Constructs, LLC and company filings

This article originally published onJanuary 23, 2018.

Disclosure: David Trainer, Kyle Guske II, and Peter Apockotos receive no compensation to write about any specific stock, style, or theme.

[1]Ernst & Youngs recent white paper Getting ROIC Right proves the superiority of our holdings research and analytics.

Disclosure:I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.