S&P Capital IQ has announced the recipients of its U.S. Mutual Fund Excellence Awards Program for the year ending Aug. 31.

The recipients are recognized as having most consistently achieved the highest overall quantitative ranking of five stars in their category based on S&P Capital IQ's holdings-based research. There are several repeat recipients and several new ones.

The funds that were award the gold designation and their categories are USAA World Growth Fund in global equity; Harding Loevner International Equity Portfolio, Investor in international equity; Dreyfus Appreciation in domestic large cap; Vanguard Selected Value Fund in domestic mid cap; Homestead Small Company Fund in domestic small cap; Sequoia Fund in domestic multicap; DWS GNMA Fund in taxable fixed income; Vanguard Balanced Index Fund, Admiral in blended individual securities; T. Rowe Price Retirement Income Fund in blended fund of funds, and T. Rowe Price U.S. Large-Cap Core Inc. in new and notable.

"It's exciting to see both a number of familiar firms, as well as many new fund families among this year's award recipients," says Todd Rosenbluth, senior director and mutual fund analyst at S&P Capital IQ. "We think this says something about the competitiveness of the industry and the turbulence in the broader markets over the past year. The funds that stood out in our approach did so in part for their favorable risk considerations."

The mutual funds were judged on a range of inputs including risk-reward profit, cost factors, manager tenure and the quality of underlying holdings, in addition to performance.