Fourth Quarter 2017 CEF Review
Fourth Quarter and 2017 Overview

The average closed-end fund (CEF) managed a small gain of 0.18% during the fourth quarter of 2017. With this positive gain for the quarter, the average CEF earned a positive total return in each of the four quarters during 2017. It was a very strong year for the CEF marketplace with the average fund up 11.37% in 2017. This follows another solid year when the average CEF was up 8.59% for 2016. Gains in 2017 were broad based for the year, but the rise in global equity prices helped propel the average equity CEF to a particularly impressive positive return of 16.08%. Fixed-income CEFs benefited from relatively stable long-term interest rates and a low default environment for credit-sensitive securities. Taxable fixed-income CEFs were up on average 10.90% for the year while municipal CEFs were positive by 6.49%. (Source: Morningstar. All data is share price total return throughout this commentary.)

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Posted on Monday, January 22, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

These posts were prepared by First Trust Advisors L.P., and reflect the current opinion of the authors. They are based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security.