What are Institutional Shares?

Also called Y shares, institutional shares are mutual fund shares that are available for sale only to institutions.

How Do Institutional Shares Work?

Let's say that the XYZ Mutual Fund invests in a variety of defensive stocks. Average investors can buy shares of the fund but must pay a front-end load. Institutional investors (such as pension funds and insurance companies) can buy institutional shares of the XYZ Mutual Fund, which do not involve a sales load but require minimum investments of, say, $300,000.

Institutional shares often have a 'Y' at the end of their fund symbols.

Why Do Institutional Shares Matter?

Institutional shares are simply shares that can be bought in bulk. Usually, they do not come with additional rights or privileges; they exist to encourage institutions to make large investments in the funds that offer them. Individuals aren't always shut out of buying institutional shares -- often, they just have to be able to afford the minimum investment.

Ask an Expert about Institutional Shares

All of our content is verified for accuracy by Paul Tracy and our team of certified financial experts. We pride ourselves on quality, research, and transparency, and we value your feedback. Below you'll find answers to some of the most common reader questions about Institutional Shares.

Be the first to ask a question

If you have a question about Institutional Shares, then please ask Paul.

Ask a question
Paul Tracy
Paul Tracy

Paul has been a respected figure in the financial markets for more than two decades. Prior to starting InvestingAnswers, Paul founded and managed one of the most influential investment research firms in America, with more than 3 million monthly readers.

Verified Content You Can Trust
verified   Certified Expertsverified   5,000+ Research Pagesverified   5+ Million Users