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MUTUAL FUNDS

Open-end fund, forms of organization, other fundsThe term mutual fund is the common name for what is classified as an open-end investment company by the SEC. Being open-ended means that, at the end of every day, the fund continually issues new shares to investors buying into the fund and must stand ready to buy back shares from investors redeeming their shares at the then current net asset value per share.

Mutual funds must be structured as corporations or trusts, such as business trusts, and any corporation or trust will be classified by the SEC as an investment company if it issues securities and primarily invests in non-government securities. An investment company will be classified by the SEC as an open-end investment company if it does not issue undivided interests in specified securities (the defining characteristic of unit investment trusts or UITs) and if it issues redeemable securities. Registered investment companies that are not UITs or open-end investment companies are closed-end funds. Closed-end funds are like open end except they are more like a company which sells its shares a single time to the public under an initial public offering or "IPO". Subsequently, the fund's shares trade with buyers and sellers of shares in the secondary market at a market-determined price (which is likely not equal to net asset value) such as on the New York or American Stock Exchange. Except for some special transactions, the fund cannot continue to grow in size by attracting more investor capital like an open-end fund may.

[edit] Exchange-traded fundsMain article: Exchange-traded fund
A relatively recent innovation, the exchange-traded fund or ETF, is often structured as an open-end investment company. ETFs combine characteristics of both mutual funds and closed-end funds. ETFs are traded throughout the day on a stock exchange, just like closed-end funds, but at prices generally approximating the ETF's net asset value. Most ETFs are index funds and track stock market indexes. Shares are issued or redeemed by institutional investors in large blocks (typically of 50,000). Most investors buy and sell shares through brokers in market transactions. Because the institutional investors normally purchase and redeem in in kind transactions, ETFs are more efficient than traditional mutual funds (which are continuously issuing and redeeming securities and, to effect such transactions, continually buying and selling securities and maintaining liquidity positions) and therefore tend to have lower expenses.

Exchange-traded funds are also valuable for foreign investors who are often able to buy and sell securities traded on a stock market, but who, for regulatory reasons, are limited in their ability to participate in traditional U.S. mutual funds.

[edit] Equity fundsEquity funds, which consist mainly of stock investments, are the most common type of mutual fund. Equity funds hold 50 percent of all amounts invested in mutual funds in the United States.[6] Often equity funds focus investments on particular strategies and certain types of issuers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
             
 
             
 
             
 
 
 
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