Glossary of Terms

The information presented here is not intended as financial, investment, tax or legal advice and is provided for educational purposes only.
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Term
Explanation
10-Q
A quarterly financial report filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission by every issuer of listed securities.
12(b)(1) Plan
A method of charging service- or distribution-related expenses directly against fund assets. "12(b)1" refers to the 1980 U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission rule that permits the use of these plans. A fund is required to include any 12b-1 fees in its stated expense ratio.
12b-1 Fee
A mutual fund's annual marketing or distribution fee, charged to fund shareholders. See the fund's prospectus for complete details.
40 Act
A 1940 law regulating the organization of companies, including mutual funds, that engage primarily in investing, reinvesting and trading securities - and whose own securities are offered to the investing public. The Act is designed to minimize conflicts of interest that arise in these complex operations. The Act requires such companies to disclose their financial condition and investment policies to investors when stock is initially sold, and subsequently, on a regular basis. The focus of the Act is on disclosure to the investing public of information about the fund and its investment objectives, as well as on investment companies' structures and operations.
401(k) Plan
An employer-sponsored qualified retirement plan that allows employees to contribute pretax dollars that are often matched by employer contributions. Contributions and earnings grow tax deferred until withdrawn, when they are taxed as ordinary income. Some 401(k) plans may also offer the ability for employees to make after-tax contributions in addition to pretax contributions.
403(b) Plan
An employer-sponsored retirement plan, similar to a 401(k) plan, for employees of public schools, certain non-profit groups and churches. Contributions and earnings grow tax deferred until withdrawn, when they are taxed as ordinary income.
5-Year EPS Growth Rate
The five-year annualized growth rate of earnings-per-share. This figure is derived by the least squares method, using six data points — a base year plus five subsequent annual data points.
52-Week High
The highest stock price over the trailing 52 weeks. This number includes intraday trades.
52-Week Low
The lowest stock price over the trailing 52 weeks. This number includes intraday trades.
8-K
A financial report filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission used to disclose any material events or developments likely to affect a company's stock price. It provides more current information than a 10Q or 10K.