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Strategic Income Closed-End Portfolio, Series 96

The Multi-Sector Approach

The Strategic Income Closed-End Portfolio seeks to provide investors a high rate of current monthly income and diversification across various fixed income securities. To accomplish this, the portfolio is diversified across a broad range of closed-end funds that invest in U.S. and foreign taxable bonds. Because different sectors within the taxable debt market follow different cycles and react differently to changes in global economies and interest rates, spreading assets across this spectrum of securities has the potential to reduce the overall risk of the portfolio.

Closed-End Features

Portfolio Control
Unlike open-end mutual funds, closed-end funds maintain a relatively fixed pool of investment capital. This allows portfolio managers to better adhere to their investment philosophies through greater flexibility and control. In addition, closed-end funds don't have to manage fund liquidity to meet potentially large redemptions.

Diversification
The portfolio offers investors diversification by investing in a broad range of taxable debt closed-end funds that are further diversified across hundreds of individual issues. Diversification does not guarantee a profit or protect against loss.

Income Distributions
Closed-end funds are structured to generally provide a more stable income stream than other managed investment products because they are not subjected to cash inflows and outflows, which can dilute distributions over time. However, stable income cannot be assured.

Portfolio Objectives

This unit investment trust seeks a high rate of current monthly income, with capital appreciation as a secondary objective. There is, however, no assurance that the objectives of the portfolio will be achieved.

Not FDIC Insured • Not Bank Guaranteed • May Lose Value

You should consider the portfolio's investment objectives, risks, and charges and expenses carefully before investing. Contact your financial professional or call First Trust Portfolios L.P. at 1.800.621.1675 to request a prospectus, which contains this and other information about the portfolio. Read it carefully before you invest.

Risk Considerations
An investment in this unmanaged unit investment trust should be made with an understanding of the risks associated with an investment in a portfolio of closed-end funds. Closed-end funds are subject to various risks, including management’s ability to meet the fund’s investment objective, and to manage the fund’s portfolio when the underlying securities are redeemed or sold, during periods of market turmoil and as investors’ perceptions regarding the funds or their underlying investments change. Unlike open-end funds, which trade at prices based on a current determination of the fund’s net asset value, closed-end funds frequently trade at a discount from their net asset value in the secondary market. Certain closed-end funds in which the portfolio invests employ the use of leverage, which increases the volatility of such funds.

All of the funds invest in floating-rate securities. A floating-rate security is an instrument in which the interest rate payable on the obligation fluctuates on a periodic basis based upon changes in an interest rate benchmark. As a result, the yield on such a security will generally decline in a falling interest rate environment, causing the trust to experience a reduction in the income it receives from such securities.

Certain of the funds invest in high-yield securities or “junk” bonds. Investing in high-yield securities should be viewed as speculative and you should review your ability to assume the risks associated with investments which utilize such securities. High-yield securities are subject to numerous risks, including higher interest rates, economic recession, deterioration of the junk bond market, possible downgrades and defaults of interest and/or principal. High-yield security prices tend to fluctuate more than higher rated securities and are affected by short-term credit developments to a greater degree.

Certain of the funds invest in investment grade securities. Investment grade securities are subject to numerous risks including higher interest rates, economic recession, deterioration of the investment grade security market or investors’ perception thereof, possible downgrades and defaults of interest and/or principal.

Certain of the funds invest in senior loan securities. The yield on funds which invest in senior loans will generally decline in a falling interest rate environment and increase in a rising interest rate environment. Senior loans are generally below investment grade quality (“junk” bonds). An investment in senior loans involves the risk that the borrowers may default on their obligations to pay principal or interest when due.

Certain of the funds invest in covenant-lite loans which contain fewer or no maintenance covenants and may hinder the closed-end funds’ ability to reprice credit risk and mitigate potential loss especially during a downturn in the credit cycle.

Certain of the funds invest in preferred securities. Preferred securities are equity securities of the issuing company which pay income in the form of dividends. Preferred securities are typically subordinated to bonds and other debt instruments in a company’s capital structure, and therefore will be subject to greater credit risk than those debt instruments.

Securities of non-U.S. issuers are subject to additional risks, including currency fluctuations, political risks, withholding, the lack of adequate financial information, and exchange control restrictions impacting non-U.S. issuers.

As the use of Internet technology has become more prevalent in the course of business, the trust has become more susceptible to potential operational risks through breaches in cybersecurity.

Ongoing armed conflicts between Russia and Ukraine in Europe and among Israel, Hamas and other militant groups in the Middle East, have caused and could continue to cause significant market disruptions and volatility within the markets in Russia, Europe, the Middle East and the United States. The hostilities and sanctions resulting from those hostilities could have a significant impact on certain investments as well as performance.

The ongoing effects of the COVID-19 global pandemic, or the potential impacts of any future public health crisis, may cause significant volatility and uncertainty in global financial markets. While vaccines have been developed, there is no guarantee that vaccines will be effective against future variants of the disease.

The value of the securities held by the trust may be subject to steep declines or increased volatility due to changes in performance or perception of the issuers.

It is important to note that an investment can be made in the underlying funds directly rather than through the trust. These direct investments can be made without paying the trust’s sales charge, operating expenses and organizational costs.

This UIT is a buy and hold strategy and investors should consider their ability to hold the trust until maturity. There may be tax consequences unless units are purchased in an IRA or other qualified plan.

For a discussion of additional risks of investing in the trust see the “Risk Factors” section of the prospectus.

 

CUSIP identifiers have been provided by CUSIP Global Services, managed on behalf of the American Bankers Association by FactSet Research Systems Inc. and are not for use or dissemination in a manner that would serve as a substitute for any CUSIP service. The CUSIP Database, ©2024 CUSIP Global Services. "CUSIP" is a registered trademark of the American Bankers Association.

Fund Cusip Information
30335M500 (Cash)
30335M518 (Reinvest)
30335M526 (Cash-Fee)
30335M534 (Reinvest-Fee)
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The information presented is not intended to constitute an investment recommendation for, or advice to, any specific person. By providing this information, First Trust is not undertaking to give advice in any fiduciary capacity within the meaning of ERISA, the Internal Revenue Code or any other regulatory framework. Financial professionals are responsible for evaluating investment risks independently and for exercising independent judgment in determining whether investments are appropriate for their clients.
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