What is an investment trust?
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Remember, the value of your investments and the income from them can go down and up, and you may not get back as much as you paid in.
THE BENEFITS OF INVESTMENT TRUSTS
An investment trust is a public listed company. It’s designed to generate profits for its shareholders by investing in the shares of other companies.
Shares in investment trusts are traded on the London Stock Exchange so investors can buy and sell from the market, rather than dealing with a fund management company.
An investment trust has a fixed number of shares. The fund manager can invest and sell assets when they feel the time is right; not when investors join or leave a fund. It also means the underlying capital investment base is relatively stable.
Investment trusts usually have smaller operating costs than Funds also known as OEICs (Open Ended Investment Companies) so their charges are generally lower.
Investment trusts can borrow money (known as gearing) to take advantage of investment opportunities. Borrowing can increase the returns for shareholders, but if the assets fall in value, it can also increase the potential for losses.
Every investment trust has an independent board of directors. They’re responsible for safeguarding shareholder interests.
Investment trusts can retain up to 15% of their income in any year (see video below). This can be used to supplement income in future years.
When you invest in an investment trust you become a shareholder in that company. This gives you the right to vote on issues such as the appointment of directors or changes to the investment policy.