The arguments over investing for growth vs. value can sometime remind advisers of a water cooler quarrel. Proponents of each approach come armed with their own compelling data and analysis. But like many spats, a simple, surprising piece of evidence can quickly derail the argument. In this case, it’s the fact that the performance of both growth-oriented U.S. equity indexes and value indexes are strikingly different depending on which index provider you choose to use.

As a case in point, we can document a significant value premium over the past 19 years if using Morningstar U.S. equity indexes, but then see it disappear when using S&P U.S. equity indexes.

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