Principal Investment Strategy
The Trust contains three sleeves of security types, all of which focus on the master limited partnership (“MLP”) space. Under normal circumstances, the Trust will invest at least 80% of the value of its assets in a combination of publicly-traded equity securities of energy MLPs, common shares of closed-end investment companies (“Closed-End Funds”) that invest substantially all of their assets in MLPs and companies in the energy sector as classified by Standard & Poor’s Global Industry Classification Standard (“GICs”), and shares of an exchange-traded fund (“ETF”) that tracks the Alerian MLP Infrastructure Index.
The securities in which the Closed-End Funds invest may include, but are not limited to:
- MLP common stocks, which may include all market capitalizations;
- MLP private placements; and
- Securities issued by MLPs and companies in the energy sector, such as warrants, convertible bonds, preferred securities, corporate bonds, senior loans, high-yield or “junk” bonds, or international bonds. The Trust does not have a specific policy as to the maturity of the bonds held by the Closed-End Funds in the portfolio and such Closed-End Funds may invest in bonds of all ranges of maturity.
The securities in which the Closed-End Funds invest may include foreign securities, including securities issued by companies headquartered or incorporated in countries considered to be emerging markets. Please see “Principal Risks” and “Investment Risks” for information concerning the risks associated with such securities.
The Trust may invest in MLPs of any market capitalization and of companies headquartered or incorporated in foreign countries.
The Sponsor has selected for the portfolio MLPs, Closed-End Funds and an ETF believed to have the best potential to achieve the Trust’s investment objective.
When selecting Closed-End Funds for inclusion in this portfolio, the Sponsor looks at numerous factors. These factors include, but are not limited to:
- Investment Objective – The Sponsor favors Closed-End Funds with a defined investment objective and a history of adherence to those policies and objectives;
- Premium/Discount – The Sponsor favors Closed-End Funds that trade at a discount to its net asset value and trade at wider discounts than peers and its own historical average discount;
- Consistent Dividend – The Sponsor favors Closed-End Funds that have a history of paying a regular monthly, quarterly, semi- or annual distribution;
- Performance – The Sponsor favors Closed-End Funds with a solid history of performance in relation to its benchmarks and peers; and
- Liquidity – The Sponsor favors Closed- End Funds with adequate daily trading liquidity.
When selecting the ETF for inclusion in this portfolio, the Sponsor will seek to include an ETF that tracks the Alerian MLP Infrastructure Index. Currently, this ETF is the Alerian MLP ETF. When selecting the ETF, the Sponsor looks at numerous factors. These factors include, but are not limited to:
- Liquidity – The Sponsor favors ETFs with adequate daily trading liquidity; and
- Yield – The Sponsor favors ETFs with market yields consistent with the investment objective of the Trust.
When selecting MLP equities for inclusion in this portfolio, the Sponsor looks at numerous factors. These factors include, but are not limited to:
- Overlap with ETF and underlying Closed-End Fund holdings – The Sponsor seeks to minimize overlap between the MLP selections in relation to the underlying holdings of the ETF and Closed-End Funds;
- Liquidity – The Sponsor favors MLPs with adequate daily trading liquidity;
- Yield – The Sponsor favors MLPs with market yields consistent with the investment objective of the Trust;
- Consistent Distribution Growth – The Sponsor favors MLPs with a history of consistent distribution growth;
- Valuations – The Sponsor favors MLPs trading at valuation levels in-line or lower than peers, as measured by operating earnings to price; and
- Debt Levels – The Sponsor favors MLPs with lower overall debt levels in relation to earnings.
INDEX DEFINITION: The Alerian MLP Infrastructure Index is comprised of 25 energy infrastructure MLPs that earn the majority of their cash flow from the transportation, storage, and processing of energy commodities. The index is unmanaged and it is not possible to invest directly in the index.
Risks and Other Considerations
As with all investments, you may lose some or all of your investment in the Trust. No assurance can be given that the Trust’s investment objective will be achieved. The Trust also might not perform as well as you expect. This can happen for reasons such as these:
- Securities prices can be volatile. The value of your investment may fall over time. Market value fluctuates in response to various factors. These can include stock market movements, purchases or sales of securities by the Trust, government policies, litigation, and changes in interest rates, inflation, the financial condition of the securities’ issuer or even perceptions of the issuer. Units of the Trust are not deposits of any bank and are not insured or guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any other government agency.
- The Trust, certain Closed-End Funds held by the Trust and the ETF invest in MLPs. MLPs are limited partnerships or limited liability companies that are taxed as partnerships and whose interests (limited partnership units or limited liability company units) are traded on securities exchanges like shares of common stock. Currently, most MLPs operate in the energy, natural resources or real estate sectors. Investments in MLP interests are subject to the risks generally applicable to companies in the energy and natural resources sectors, including commodity pricing risk, supply and demand risk, depletion risk and exploration risk.
The benefit the Trust derives from its investment in MLPs is largely dependent on their being treated as partnerships for federal income tax purposes. As a partnership, an MLP has no income tax liability at the entity level. If, as a result of a change in an MLP’s business, an MLP were treated as a corporation for federal income tax purposes, such MLP would be obligated to pay federal income tax on its income at the applicable corporate tax rate. If an MLP was classified as a corporation for federal income tax purposes, the amount of cash available for distribution with respect to its units would be reduced and any such distributions received by the Trust would be taxed entirely as dividend income if paid out of the earnings of the MLP. Therefore, treatment of an MLP as a corporation for federal income tax purposes would result in a material reduction in the after-tax return to the Trust, likely causing a substantial reduction in the value of the units of the Trust.
- The Trust is concentrated in the energy sector and certain Closed- End Funds and the ETF held by the Trust include securities issued by companies in the energy sector. As a result, the factors that impact the energy sector will likely have a greater effect on this Trust than on a more broadly diversified Trust. Companies in the energy sector are subject to volatile fluctuations in price and supply of energy fuels, and can be impacted by international politics and conflicts, including the unrest and hostilities in the Middle East, terrorist attacks, the success of exploration projects, reduced demand as a result of increases in energy efficiency and energy conservation, natural disasters, clean-up and litigation costs associated with environmental damage and extensive regulation.
- Certain Closed-End Funds and the ETF held by the Trust invest in companies in the infrastructure sector. Infrastructure companies, including utilities, energy and companies involved in infrastructure projects, may be subject to a variety of factors that may adversely affect their business or operations, including high interest costs in connection with capital construction programs, high leverage, costs associated with environmental and other regulations.
- Certain Closed-End Funds held by the Trust may invest in securities that are rated below investment-grade and are considered to be “junk” securities. Below investment-grade obligations are considered to be speculative and are subject to greater market and credit risks, and accordingly, the risk of nonpayment or default is higher than with investment-grade securities. In addition, such securities may be more sensitive to interest rate changes and more likely to receive early returns of principal in falling rate environments.
- Certain Closed-End Funds held by the Trust may invest in securities that are rated as investment-grade by only one rating agency. As a result, such split-rated securities may have more speculative characteristics and are subject to a greater risk of default than securities rated as investment-grade by more than one rating agency.
- The Trust invests and certain Closed-End Funds and the ETF held by the Trust may invest in securities issued by small-capitalization and/or mid-capitalization companies. These securities customarily involve more investment risk than securities of large-capitalization companies. Small-capitalization and mid-capitalization companies may have limited product lines, markets or financial resources and may be more vulnerable to adverse general market or economic developments.
- The Trust includes Closed-End Funds. Closed-End Funds are actively managed investment companies that invest in various types of securities. Closed-End Funds issue common shares that are traded on a securities exchange. Closed-End Funds are subject to various risks, including management’s ability to meet the Closed-End Fund’s investment objective and to manage the Closed- End Fund’s portfolio during periods of market turmoil and as investors’ perceptions regarding Closed-End Funds or their underlying investments change. Closed-End Funds are not redeemable at the option of the shareholder and they may trade in the market at a discount to their net asset value. Closed-End Funds may also employ the use of leverage which increases risk and volatility.
- The Trust includes an ETF. ETFs are investment pools that hold other securities. ETFs are subject to various risks, including management’s ability to meet the fund’s investment objective. Shares of ETFs may trade at a discount from their net asset value in the secondary market. This risk is separate and distinct from the risk that the net asset value of the ETF shares may decrease. The amount of such discount from net asset value is subject to change from time to time in response to various factors. The underlying ETF has management and operating expenses. Consequently, you will bear not only your share of the Trust’s expenses, but also the expenses of the underlying ETF. By investing in an ETF, the Trust incurs greater expenses than you would incur if you invested directly in the ETF.
- The Trust is subject to an ETF’s index correlation risk. To the extent that an underlying ETF is an index tracking ETF, index correlation risk is the risk that the performance of an ETF will vary from the actual performance of the fund’s target index, known as “tracking error.” This can happen due to fund expenses, transaction costs, market impact, corporate actions (such as mergers and spin-offs) and timing variances.
- The ETF and Closed-End Funds are subject to annual fees and expenses, including a management fee. Unitholders of the Trust will bear these fees in addition to the fees and expenses of the Trust. See “Fees and Expenses” for additional information.
- The value of the fixed-income securities in the Closed-End Funds or the ETF will generally fall if interest rates, in general, rise. Typically, fixed-income securities with longer periods before maturity are more sensitive to interest rate changes. The Trust may be subject to greater risk of rising interest rates than would normally be the case due to the current period of historically low rates.
- A Closed-End Fund, ETF or an issuer of securities held by a Closed- End Fund or ETF may be unwilling or unable to make principal payments and/or to declare distributions in the future, may call a security before its stated maturity, or may reduce the level of distributions declared. Issuers may suspend dividends during the life of the Trust. This may result in a reduction in the value of your units.
- The financial condition of a Closed-End Fund, ETF or an issuer of securities held by a Closed-End Fund or ETF may worsen, resulting in a reduction in the value of your units. This may occur at any point in time, including during the primary offering period.
- Certain Closed-End Funds and the ETF held by the Trust may invest in foreign securities. Investment in foreign securities presents additional risk. Foreign risk is the risk that foreign securities will be more volatile than U.S. securities due to such factors as adverse economic, currency, political, social or regulatory developments in a country, including government seizure of assets, excessive taxation, limitations on the use or transfer of assets, the lack of liquidity or regulatory controls with respect to certain industries or differing legal and/or accounting standards.
- Certain Closed-End Funds or the ETF held by the Trust may invest in securities issued by companies headquartered or incorporated in countries considered to be emerging markets. Emerging markets are generally defined as countries with low per capita income in the initial stages of their industrialization cycles. Risks of investing in developing or emerging countries include the possibility of investment and trading limitations, liquidity concerns, delays and disruptions in settlement transactions, political uncertainties and dependence on international trade and development assistance. Companies headquartered in emerging market countries may be exposed to greater volatility and market risk.
- Share prices, dividend rates or distributions on the securities in the Trust may decline during the life of the Trust. There is no guarantee that share prices of the securities in the Trust will not decline and that the issuers of the securities will declare dividends or distributions in the future and, if declared, whether they will remain at current levels or increase over time.
- Inflation may lead to a decrease in the value of assets or income from investments.
- The Sponsor does not actively manage the portfolio. The Trust will generally hold, and may, when creating additional units, continue to buy, the same securities even though a security’s outlook, market value or yield may have changed.
See “Investment Risks” in Part A of the prospectus and “Risk Factors” in Part B of the prospectus for additional information.