Mutual Funds & ETFs

A 12b-1 fee is a fee assessed by a mutual fund to its shareholders. The fees cover the fund's marketing expenses and are named after the section of the Investment Company Act of 1940 that makes them legal
The 30-day annualized yield is a measure of the yearly rate paid to investors of an interest-bearing account, based on the returns earned in a 30-day period.  
The 7-day annualized yield is a measure of the yearly rate paid to investors of an interest-bearing account, based on the returns earned in a 7-day period.
A shares are a type of mutual fund share. They are distinguished from B Shares and C Shares by their load (fee) structure.
An aggressive growth fund is a mutual fund which invests exclusively in high-risk/high-return stocks in an attempt to benefit from the potentially high returns on start-up companies and IPOs.
An all weather fund is a mutual fund that performs well regardless of market conditions.
An appraisal ratio is the ratio of a mutual fund's alpha to its risk.
Assets under management (AUM) refers to the total market value of investments managed by a mutual fund, money management firm, hedge fund, portfolio manager, or other financial services company.
B shares are a type of mutual fund share.  They are distinguished from A shares and C shares by their load (fee) structure.
A back-end load is a fee paid when an investor sells a specific investment. Back-end load mutual funds are often referred to as "B Shares."
A balanced fund is a mutual fund that generally keeps to a 50-50 mix of stock and bond investments. 
A blend fund, also called a hybrid fund, is a mutual fund composed of a combination of securities from different asset classes designed to increase diversification with just a single fund.
In the mutual fund world, a breakpoint is the size of an investment that qualifies the investor for a lower load.
C shares are a type of mutual fund share.  They are distinguished from A shares and B shares by their load (fee) structure.
Capital gains distributions are capital gains that are passed on to investment company shareholders.
A closed fund, also called a closed-end fund, is a publicly traded security that offers its shareholders partial ownership in an underlying portfolio of assets.
A closed-end fund (CEF) is a publicly traded security that offers its shareholders partial ownership in an underlying portfolio of assets.
Also called a back-end load, a contingent deferred sales charge is a fee paid to sell a specific investment. It is expressed as a percentage of the amount invested, and may also be called an exit fee or a
Discount to net asset value (NAV) refers to a situation where shares of a closed-end stock fund are trading at a price lower than the fund’s net asset value per share. For example, a fund could be
A dividend ETF is a basket of dividend-paying securities that are bundled together into a single security that can be bought and sold like a stock.
A dividend fund is a type of mutual fund which invests exclusively in equity shares which pay regular dividends.
An emerging markets fund is a fund that invests in the securities of companies and governments in developing countries.
An equity fund is an open or closed-end fund that invests primarily in stocks, allowing investors to buy into the fund and thus buy a basket of stocks more easily than they could purchase the individual
Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) are securities that closely resemble index funds, but can be bought and sold during the day just like common stocks. These investment vehicles allow investors a convenient way
The expense ratio is the recurring management fees for a mutual fund. A fund company charges its fund holders the expense ratio each year (expressed in terms of a percentage of the fund's assets). The
Forward pricing is the SEC-mandated policy of processing buy and sell orders for open-ended mutual fund shares at the net asset value (NAV) as of the next market close (not the most recent market close). 
A front-end load is a fee paid to purchase a specific investment. It is expressed as a percentage of the amount invested. Front-end load mutual funds are often referred to as "A Shares."
Fund usually refers to mutual fund, which is an open-ended investment company that pools investors' money into a fund operated by a portfolio manager. This manager then turns around and invests this large
A fund manager is an investment professional who oversees the investments within a portfolio.
An income deposit security (IDS), also known as an "enhanced income security," is an exchange-traded security composed of both an issuer's common shares and its subordinated notes.
An income-oriented ETF is an exchange-traded fund that pays frequent dividends or interest payments to investors in the ETF.
Like other ETFs, an index ETF is essentially a passive mutual fund -- similar to traditional index funds -- that allows investors to purchase a basket of securities in a single transaction. An index ETF
Index funds are mutual funds that are designed to track the performance of a particular index.
An index hugger is a type of mutual fund whose performance closely tracks a major stock index.
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
International bond funds invest in bonds issued by foreign governments or foreign companies in a variety of markets, industries, and currencies. They allow investors to have an easy way to gain a diverse
International fund usually refers to an investment or mutual fund composed of international bonds and foreign company stocks.
Created by Barclays Global Investors, iShares are a trademarked brand of exchange-traded funds (ETFs).
Late-day trading is the practice of illicitly recording trades executed after hours as having occurred prior to the end of market trading.
A level-load is a periodic fee (usually annual) paid by the investor during the time he or she owns the investment.  Level-load mutual funds are often referred to as "C Shares."
A load is a fee paid to purchase or sell a specific investment. It is expressed as a percentage of the amount invested. The term is most often used when discussing mutual funds.
A load fund is a mutual fund that carries a fee to purchase or sell its shares. This load is expressed as a percentage of the amount invested.
A market neutral fund is a mutual fund whose goal is consistent returns in any market climate.
The Morningstar risk rating is Morningstar's evaluation of a mutual fund's level of risk.
A municipal bond fund is a mutual fund that invests primarily in securities issued by municipalities. 
Mutual funds are open-ended investment companies that pool investors' money into a fund operated by a portfolio manager. This manager then turns around and invests this large pool of shareholder money in
Most commonly used in reference to mutual or closed-end funds, net asset value (NAV) measures the value of a fund's assets, minus its liabilities. NAV is typically calculated on a per-share basis.
In finance, the net asset value per share (NAVPS) is the value of one share of a mutual fund.
A no-load fund is a mutual fund that does not charge a sales commission to investors. Shares of no-load funds are purchased directly from the fund companies rather than through brokers.
Also called a no-load fund, a no-transaction-fee mutual fund is a mutual fund that does not charge a sales commission to investors. Shares of no-transaction-fee funds are purchased directly from the fund
An offering circular is an abbreviated prospectus.
An offshore mutual fund is a mutual fund based in another country.
A portfolio manager is responsible for investing a fund's assets, overseeing investment strategy and carrying-out day-to-day trading.
A prospectus is a legal document that is required by the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) to accompany securities or investment offerings for sale. A prospectus contains key facts and information
QQQQ was the ticker for the Nasdaq 100 Index Trust ETF (it is now QQQ).
A quant fund is typically a mutual fund that picks investments based solely on mathematical analysis.
Also called commission or a load, a sales charge is a fee paid to purchase or sell a specific investment. It is expressed as a percentage of the amount invested. The term is most often used when
A spider (SPDR) is an exchange-traded fund (ETF) that tracks the Standard & Poor's 500 Index. SPDR stands for S&P Depository Receipts. However, the term can also refer to any ETF that tracks the S
A stratified sampling approach is an indexing strategy whereby a fund manager divides an index into different "cells" that represent different characteristics of the index. The fund manager then chooses
Target date funds are mutual funds designed to target the date of an investor’s goal, such as retirement or college education funding. The strategy of the fund will focus on capital appreciation at the
A tax-efficient fund is a mutual fund or ETF that minimizes the fundholder's tax bill in some way.
Tracking error is the difference between a portfolio's returns and the benchmark or index it was meant to mimic or beat. Tracking error is sometimes called active risk. There are two ways to measure
A unit investment trust is a type of investment fund comprising a fixed portfolio of securities that is sold in units to potential investors similar to a mutual fund.
A water ETF is an exchange-traded fund that invests in water-related companies.
Y 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
A Y-share is a class of mutual funds with high minimum investments.
Z-shares are shares of mutual funds for the employees of those mutual funds.