Closed-End Fund Structure:
A closed-end fund is similar to an open-end mutual fund in that both professionally managed investment companies that provide shareholders with a diversified portfolio of securities oriented towards a specific objective. The difference is that closed-end funds typically have a fixed number of shares outstanding, are traded on a stock exchange and can be bought or sold at a market price that may be above or below the net asset value (a premium or a discount) depending on the market demand for the closed-end fund shares.
Closed-End Fund Advantages:
Because a closed-end fund has a relatively stable asset base, the fund manager can exercise greater investment flexibility and can respond more quickly to changing market conditions. In a closed-end fund, unlike an open-end fund, securities do not have to be sold to meet redemptions and yields are not diluted by sudden influxes of cash. The ability to invest in private companies and private placements of public securities (usually at a discount to the public market) is significantly constrained in an open-end fund structure. Investments in smaller, emerging public companies, which are often relatively thinly traded and investments in private companies and private placements, which are generally not traded, can be done by closed-end funds without concern that an inopportune sale might be necessary to meet redemptions. In a closed-end fund, due to the stability of the asset base, a fund manager can focus on a longer-term investment objective.
Closed-End Sector Funds:
Closed-end sector funds invest in one type of sector or industry. Although the investments invest in many different issuers within the sector, these funds can experience higher than average market volatility, as well as returns.