Screen Shot 2015-08-20 at 10.37.24 AMA new study shows Louisville’s investors are both the best in the state, and among the best in the nation, raking above-average in annual returns and with low volatility. This new study was released by the investor site Smartasset.

Smartasset’s goal with this new study was to find places in the U.S. where investors not only saw good returns on their investments, but were able to get these returns without too much risk. Smartasset used investing data from the past 12 months.

To create its rankings, Smartasset used data from the site Openfolio, an open-data site where investors voluntarily share information about investments.

According to AJ Smith, managing editor at Smartasset, Louisville’s investors ranked 25th out of the 112 cities reviewed in the study, making it one of the best-performing cities studied. Lexington, by contrast, was ranked 59th.

“The study shows people in Louisville have higher returns with much less risk,” she said.

Over the past 12 months, investors in Louisville averaged annual returns on their investments of 9.9 percent, while the national average was 9 percent. At the same time, Louisville’s volatility score was 11.4 percent, way below the national average of 16.9 percent. After taxes were paid, Louisville’s investors took home 6.6 percent, on average, slightly below the national average of 6.9 percent.

Smith said Louisville’s comparatively lower post-tax returns can be credited to Kentucky’s capital gains taxes, which tax investment income as regular income, lessening investors’ profits.

States can tax capital gains at different rates, with several states, including Florida, Tennessee, Texas, and New Hampshire, having no state capital gains at all.

Louisville’s low volatility is largely responsible for its comparatively high ranking. Many cities had better returns, but were far more volatile. Honolulu,¬†for example, ranked just below Louisville, and while it had far superior post-tax returns, averaging 8.9 percent, it was also far more volatile, with a percentage score of 15.9 percent.

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David Serchuk
David Serchuk is a staff writer at Insider Louisville. He is a former editor at Forbes.com, and an ex-reporter at Forbes magazine. He's written for NPR, CNBC.com, New York, Pittsburgh, Louisville and other publications named for places. He enjoys writing about business, music and other things as well.