Senior Loan & Limited Duration Closed-End, Series 96
As interest rates remain low, these are challenging times to invest for income. In this environment, many investors are seeking alternative sources of income, including those which tend to be less rate-sensitive
than other segments of the bond market, such as senior loans and limited duration bonds.
This unit investment trust seeks high current income by investing in a diversified
portfolio of closed-end funds which invest in senior loan and limited duration fixed-income
securities; however, there is no assurance the objective will be met.
Consider These Factors
- While senior loans are generally loans which have been made to companies whose debt is typically rated
below investment grade, they are senior in the asset structure of a company and historical recovery rates
in the event of a default tend to be much higher relative to junior high-yield corporate debt.
- We believe that senior loans can be used as an effective means to aid portfolio diversification because
of their low correlation to other fixed-income asset classes. Correlation is a statistical measure that
provides a way to evaluate the potential diversification benefits of combining different assets. The
historical correlation between senior loans and other asset classes, including investment-grade
corporate bonds and equities, is low. Because senior loans are not highly correlated with other asset
classes, they can potentially decrease portfolio volatility, enhance overall return and provide meaningful
diversification to an asset allocation strategy. It is important to note that diversification does not
guarantee a profit or protect against loss.
- Limited duration closed-end funds provide investors with the potential for high income but with less
interest rate sensitivity. The duration of a bond is a measure of its price sensitivity to interest rate
movements based on the weighted average term to maturity of its interest and principal cash flows.
- Limited duration closed-end funds are typically diversified across several different segments of the fixed
income market. This multi-sector income approach primarily helps to reduce volatility and also has the
potential to enhance your returns because different sectors within the debt market often react
differently to economic and market changes.
Since closed-end funds maintain a relatively fixed pool of investment
capital, portfolio managers are better able to 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.
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 dividends over time. However, as a result of bond calls,
redemptions and advanced refundings, which can dilute a fund’s income, the portfolio cannot guarantee
| 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.
An investment in this unmanaged
unit investment trust should be made with an understanding of
the risks associated with senior loan and limited duration
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 to their net asset value in the secondary market. Certain of the closed-end funds employ the use of leverage, which increases the volatility of such funds.
Certain of the closed-end 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 floating-rate securities pay interest based on
LIBOR. Due to the uncertainty regarding the future utilization of LIBOR and the nature of any
replacement rate, the potential effect of a transition away from LIBOR on a fund or the financial
instruments in which the fund invests cannot yet be determined.
All of the closed-end 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 closed-end 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 closed-end funds invest in limited duration bonds.
Limited duration bonds are subject to interest rate risk, which is
the risk that the value of a security will fall if interest rates
increase. While limited duration bonds are generally subject to
less interest rate sensitivity than longer duration bonds, there
can be no assurance that interest rates will not rise during the
life of the trust.
Certain of the closed-end funds invest in mortgage-backed securities. Rising interest rates tend to extend the
duration of mortgage-backed securities, making them more sensitive to changes in interest rates, and may
reduce the market value of the securities. In addition, mortgage-backed securities are subject to prepayment
risk, the risk that borrowers may pay off their mortgages sooner than expected, particularly when interest
Certain of the closed-end funds invest in senior loans. The yield on closed-end 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 closed-end 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 closed-end funds invest in securities issued by foreign issuers. Such securities are subject
to certain risks including currency and interest rate fluctuations, nationalization or other adverse
political or economic developments, lack of liquidity of certain foreign markets, withholding, the
lack of adequate financial information, and exchange control restrictions impacting foreign issuers.
On January 31, 2020, the United Kingdom officially departed the European Union (commonly referred to as
“Brexit”). Brexit has led to volatility in global financial markets, in particular those of the United Kingdom
and across Europe, and may also lead to weakening in political, regulatory, consumer, corporate and financial
confidence in the United Kingdom and Europe.
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
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
The recent outbreak of a respiratory disease designated as COVID-19 was first detected in China in December
2019. The global economic impact of the COVID-19 outbreak is impossible to predict but is expected to
disrupt manufacturing, supply chains and sales in affected areas and negatively impact global economic
growth prospects. The COVID-19 outbreak has also caused significant volatility and declines in global
financial markets, which have caused losses for investors. The impact of the COVID-19 outbreak may be short
term or may last for an extended period of time, and in either case could result in a substantial economic
downturn or recession.
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.
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.
For a discussion of additional risks of investing
in the trust see the “Risk Factors” section of the