Active Trading Risk. The Fund engages in frequent trading of portfolio securities. Active trading results in added expenses and may result in a lower return and increased tax liability.
Call Risk. If interest rates fall, it is possible that issuers of debt securities with high interest rates will prepay or call their securities before their maturity dates. In this event, the proceeds from the called securities would likely be reinvested by the Fund in securities bearing the new, lower interest rates, resulting in a possible decline in the Fund's income and distributions to shareholders.
Counterparty Risk. Counterparty risk is the risk that the other party to the contract will not fulfill its contractual obligations, which may cause losses or additional costs to the Fund.
Credit Risk. The issuer of instruments in which the Fund invests may be unable to meet interest and/or principal payments, thereby causing its instruments to decrease in value and lowering the issuer's credit rating.
Derivatives Risk. The performance of derivative instruments is tied to the performance of an underlying currency, security, index or other instrument. In addition to risks relating to their underlying instruments, the use of derivatives may include other, possibly greater, risks. Derivatives involve costs, may be volatile, and may involve a small initial investment relative to the risk assumed. Risks associated with the use of derivatives may include counterparty, leverage, correlation, liquidity, tax, market, interest rate and management risks. Derivatives may also be more difficult to purchase, sell or value than other investments. The Fund may lose more than the cash amount invested on investments in derivatives. Investors should bear in mind that, while the Fund intends to use derivative strategies, it is not obligated to actively engage in these transactions, generally or in any particular kind of derivative, if the investment manager elects not to do so due to availability, cost, market conditions or other factors.
Developing/Emerging Markets Securities Risk. Securities issued by foreign companies and governments located in developing/emerging countries may be affected more negatively by inflation, devaluation of their currencies, higher transaction costs, delays in settlement, adverse political developments, the introduction of capital controls, withholding taxes, nationalization of private assets, expropriation, social unrest, war or lack of timely information than those in developed countries.
Exchange-Traded Funds Risk. An investment by the Fund in exchange-traded funds generally presents the same primary risks as an investment in a mutual fund. In addition, an exchange-traded fund may be subject to the following: (1) a discount of the exchange-traded fund's shares to its net asset value; (2) failure to develop an active trading market for the exchange-traded fund's shares; (3) the listing exchange halting trading of the exchange-traded fund's shares; (4) failure of the exchange-traded fund's shares to track the referenced index; and (5) holding troubled securities in the referenced index. Exchange-traded funds may involve duplication of management fees and certain other expenses, as the Fund indirectly bears its proportionate share of any expenses paid by the exchange-traded funds in which it invests. Further, certain of the exchange-traded funds in which the Fund may invest are leveraged. The more the Fund invests in such leveraged exchange-traded funds, the more this leverage will magnify any losses on those investments.
Financial Institutions Risk. Investments in financial institutions may be subject to certain risks, including, but not limited to, the risk of regulatory actions, changes in interest rates and concentration of loan portfolios in an industry or sector. Financial institutions are highly regulated and may suffer setbacks should regulatory rules and interpretations under which they operate change. Likewise, there is a high level of competition among financial institutions which could adversely affect the viability of an institution.
Foreign Securities Risk. The Fund's foreign investments may be affected by changes in a foreign country's exchange rates, political and social instability, changes in economic or taxation policies, difficulties when enforcing obligations, decreased liquidity, and increased volatility. Foreign companies may be subject to less regulation resulting in less publicly available information about the companies.
High Yield Bond (Junk Bond) Risk. Junk bonds involve a greater risk of default or price changes due to changes in the credit quality of the issuer. The values of junk bonds fluctuate more than those of high-quality bonds in response to company, political, regulatory or economic developments. Values of junk bonds can decline significantly over short periods of time.
Interest Rate Risk. Interest rate risk refers to the risk that bond prices generally fall as interest rates rise; conversely, bond prices generally rise as interest rates fall. Specific bonds differ in their sensitivity to changes in interest rates depending on their individual characteristics, including duration.
Leverage Risk. Leverage exists when the Fund purchases or sells an instrument or enters into a transaction without investing cash in an amount equal to the full economic exposure of the instrument or transaction and the Fund could lose more than it invested. Leverage created from borrowing or certain types of transactions or instruments, including derivatives, may impair the Fund's liquidity, cause it to liquidate positions at an unfavorable time, increase volatility or otherwise not achieve its intended objective.
Liquidity Risk. The Fund may hold illiquid securities that it may be unable to sell at the preferred time or price and could lose its entire investment in such securities.
Management Risk. The investment techniques and risk analysis used by the Fund's portfolio managers may not produce the desired results.
Market Risk. The prices of and the income generated by the Fund's securities may decline in response to, among other things, investor sentiment, general economic and market conditions, regional or global instability, and currency and interest rate fluctuations.
Mortgage- and Asset-Backed Securities Risk. The Fund may invest in mortgage- and asset-backed securities that are subject to prepayment or call risk, which is the risk that the borrower's payments may be received earlier or later than expected due to changes in prepayment rates on underlying loans. Faster prepayments often happen when interest rates are falling. As a result, the Fund may reinvest these early payments at lower interest rates, thereby reducing the Fund's income. Conversely, when interest rates rise, prepayments may happen more slowly, causing the security to lengthen in duration. Longer duration securities tend to be more volatile. Securities may be prepaid at a price less than the original purchase value. An unexpectedly high rate of defaults on the mortgages held by a mortgage pool may adversely affect the value of mortgage-backed securities and could result in losses to the Fund. The risk of such defaults is generally higher in the case of mortgage pools that include subprime mortgages. Subprime mortgages refer to loans made to borrowers with weakened credit histories or with lower capacity to make timely payments on their mortgages.
Non-Correlation Risk. The return of the Fund's preferred equity segment may not match the return of the Index for a number of reasons. For example, the Fund incurs operating expenses not applicable to the Index, and incurs costs in buying and selling securities, especially when rebalancing securities holdings to reflect changes in the Index. In addition, the performance of the preferred equity segment and the Index may vary due to asset valuation differences and differences between the preferred equity segment and the Index resulting from legal restrictions, costs or liquidity constraints.
Preferred Securities Risk. Preferred securities may include provisions that permit the issuer, in its discretion, to defer or omit distributions for a certain period of time. If the Fund owns a security that is deferring or omitting its distributions, the Fund may be required to report the distribution on its tax returns, even though it may not have received this income. Further, preferred securities may lose substantial value due to the omission or deferment of dividend payments.
Reinvestment Risk. Reinvestment risk is the risk that a bond's cash flows (coupon income and principal repayment) will be reinvested at an interest rate below that on the original bond.
REIT Risk/Real Estate Risk. Investments in real estate related instruments may be affected by economic, legal, cultural, environmental or technological factors that affect property values, rents or occupancies of real estate related to the Fund's holdings. Real estate companies, including REITs or similar structures, tend to be small and mid cap companies, and their shares may be more volatile and less liquid. The value of investments in real estate related companies may be affected by the quality of management, the ability to repay loans, the utilization of leverage and financial covenants related thereto, whether the company carries adequate insurance and environmental factors. If a real estate related company defaults, the Fund may own real estate directly, which involves the following additional risks: environmental liabilities, difficulty in valuing and selling the real estate, and economic or regulatory changes.
Tax Risk. If the U.S. Treasury Department were to exercise its authority to issue regulations that exclude from the definition of "qualifying income" foreign currency gains not directly related to the Fund's business of investing in securities, the Fund may be unable to qualify as a regulated investment company for one or more years. In this event, the Fund's Board of Trustees may authorize a significant change in investment strategy or Fund liquidation.
U.S. Government Obligations Risk. The Fund may invest in obligations issued by U.S. Government agencies and instrumentalities that may receive varying levels of support from the government, which could affect the Fund's ability to recover should they default.