Following a very difficult second quarter of 2022 for the equity and credit markets (https://www.ftportfolios.com/Commentary/Insights/2022/7/19/second-quarter-2022
) as well as for many closed-end funds (CEFs), the third quarter of 2022 was also a difficult one. Many of the factors that battered the equity and credit markets during the first half of 2022 were also present in the third quarter, including concerns about the potential for a global recession, rising short- and long-term interest rates, and stubbornly high inflation data. The total return for the average CEF was -6.6% for the third quarter and is now -22.9% for the year, as of 9/30/22. The weakness was widespread and similar to the second quarter, every single CEF category tracked by Morningstar posted a negative total return with the exception of the MLP category where the average MLP CEF posted a third quarter total return of 2.8%. For the third quarter, equity CEFs returned -6.6%, fixed-income CEFs returned -6.6%, municipal CEFs returned -8.5%, and taxable fixed-income CEFs returned -5.1%. As of 9/30/22, the year-to-date (YTD) total return for the average equity CEF was -20.0%, the average fixed-income CEF was -24.3%, the average municipal CEF was -26.4% and the average taxable fixed-income CEF was -22.7%.