American Funds, iShares and Ivy Funds are the investment brands viewed most positively by advisors, according to a new study.

The survey, which fielded 3,129 responses from financial intermediaries between April 2 and April 20, asked participants to rate 20 mutual fund companies by a variety of criteria, including consistency, dedication to advisors, ethics, trustworthiness and sophistication.

The study was conducted by kasina, a financial services consulting firm, and Horsesmouth, an online advisor community.

While American Funds topped the list in terms of overall brand attributes, other companies led the field in individual categories, according to kasina and Horsesmouth.

Ivy Funds and iShares, for example, were viewed as "exceptionally innovative," PIMCO was considered the most sophisticated and Vanguard was viewed as the least expensive, according to the survey.

The companies that received the most positive responses, in descending order, were: American Funds, iShares/Barclays, Ivy Funds, PIMCO/Allianz Funds, Vanguard Group, Franklin Templeton Investments, BlackRock, Fidelity/Fidelity Advisors, JPMorgan Asset Management and Natixis Funds.

"American Funds has certainly established itself as a leader in several areas, including consistency, dedication to advisors, ease of doing business and trustworthiness," said Lee Kowarski, principal at kasina.