Principal Risks of the Fund
All investments carry some degree of risk that will affect the value of the Fund, its investment performance and the price of its shares. As a result, you may lose money if you invest in the Fund.
Credit Risk. The companies in which the Funds may invest may have their credit rating downgraded, fail financially or be unwilling or unable to make timely payments of interest or principal, thereby reducing the value of the Funds’ portfolio and its income.
Currency Risk. The U.S. dollar value of the Fund’s assets will be affected by foreign currency exchange rates and may be affected by exchange control regulations. A change in the value of any foreign currency will change the U.S. dollar value of the Fund’s assets that are denominated or traded in that country. In addition, the Fund may incur costs in connection with conversions between various currencies. A risk of not hedging currencies is that if the U.S. dollar strengthens, returns from foreign markets will be less when converted into U.S. dollars.
Derivatives. The Fund may use derivatives (including futures and forwards) to pursue its investment objective. The Fund’s use of derivative instruments involves risks different from, or possibly greater than, the risks associated with investing directly in securities and other traditional investments. These risks include (i) the risk that the counterparty to a derivative transaction may not fulfill its contractual obligations, (ii) risk of mispricing or improper valuation, and (iii) the risk that changes in the value of the derivative may not correlate perfectly with the underlying asset, rate or index. These risks could cause the Fund to lose more than the principal amount invested. Risks of futures contracts may arise from an imperfect correlation between movements in the price of the instruments and the price of the underlying securities. The Fund’s use of futures contracts may expose the Fund to leverage risk because of the small margin requirements relative to the value of the futures contract.
Developing Markets. Investment in developing markets are subject to unique political, economic, and market risks that can cause the Fund’s investments to be more volatile and less liquid than investments in developed markets.
Early Stage Companies Risk. Early stage companies may never obtain necessary financing, may rely on untested business plans, may not be successful in developing markets for their products or services, and may remain an insignificant part of their industry, and as such may never be profitable. Stocks of early stage companies may be less liquid, privately traded, and more volatile and speculative than the securities of larger companies.
Foreign Securities and Foreign Markets Risk. Foreign securities are generally more volatile and less liquid than U.S. securities. Further, foreign securities may be subject to additional risks not associated with investment in U.S. securities due to differences in the economic and political environment, the amount of available public information, the degree of market regulation, and financial reporting, accounting and auditing standards, and, in the case of foreign currency-denominated securities, fluctuations in currency exchange rates. Certain foreign markets may require payment for securities before delivery and delays may be encountered in settling securities transactions. In some foreign markets, there may not be protection against failure by other parties to complete transactions. There may be limited legal recourse against an issuer in the event of a default on a debt instrument.
Foreign Tax Risk. The Fund’s income from foreign issuers may be subject to non-U.S. withholding taxes. A Fund may also be subject to taxes on trading profits or on transfers of securities in some countries. To the extent foreign income taxes are paid by the Fund, shareholders may not be entitled to a credit or deduction for U.S. tax purposes.
Gold and Precious Metals Risk. The Fund may hold investments in gold and other precious metals (including silver, platinum, palladium and other precious metals) operating companies. The price of gold and precious metals operating companies is strongly affected by the price of gold or other precious metals such as platinum, palladium and silver, as well as by certain costs and business and operational risks directly associated with their operations. These prices may be volatile, fluctuating substantially over short periods of time. In times of stable economic growth, traditional equity and debt investments could offer greater appreciation potential and the value of gold and other precious metals may be adversely affected, which in turn could affect the Fund’s returns. In addition, some gold and precious metals mining companies have hedged their exposure to falls in the price of gold or precious metals by selling forward future production, which could limit the company’s benefit from future rises in the price of gold or precious metals.
Growth Stock Risk. Growth stock prices may be more sensitive to changes in current or expected earnings than the prices of other stocks, and they may fall or not appreciate in step with the broader securities markets.
Initial Public Offerings (IPO) Risk. IPOs involve a higher degree of risk because companies involved in IPOs generally have limited operating histories and their prospects for future profitability are uncertain. Prices of IPOs may also be unstable due to the absence of a prior public market, the small number of shares available for trading and limited investor information.
Interest Rate Risk. The fixed-income securities in which the Fund may invest may be of any quality or duration. Duration is a weighted measure of the length of time a bond will pay out and takes into account interest payments that occur throughout the course of holding the bond. In general, the longer the bond’s duration, the more its price will drop as interest rates go up. The value of the Fund’s investments in fixed-income securities will generally decrease when interest rates rise, which means the Fund’s NAV will likewise decrease.
Large-Cap Company Stock Risk. Large-capitalization companies may go in and out of favor based on market and economic conditions. Large companies may be unable to respond quickly to new competitive challenges, such as changes in technology, and also may not be able to attain the high growth rate of successful smaller companies, especially during extended periods of economic expansion. Although the securities of largest companies may be less volatile than those of companies with smaller market capitalizations, returns on investments in securities of large capitalization companies could trail the returns on investments in securities of smaller companies.
Liquidity Risk. Liquidity risk exists when particular investments of the Fund would be difficult to purchase or sell, possibly preventing the Fund from selling less liquid securities at an advantageous time or price, or possibly requiring the Fund to dispose of the investment, or other investments, at unfavorable times or prices in order to satisfy its obligations.
Managed Portfolio Risk. The Adviser’s investment strategies or choice of specific securities may be unsuccessful and may cause the Fund to incur losses.
Micro-Cap Company Stock Risk. Micro-cap stocks involve substantially greater risks of loss and price fluctuations because micro-cap companies' earnings and revenues tend to be less predictable (and some companies may be experiencing significant losses). Micro-cap stocks tend to be less liquid than stocks of companies with larger market capitalizations. Micro-cap companies may be newly formed or in the early stages of development, with limited product lines, markets or financial resources and may lack management depth. In addition, there may be less public information available about these companies. The shares of micro-cap companies tend to trade less frequently than those of larger, more established companies, which generally increases liquidity risk and pricing risk for these securities. There may be a substantial period before the fund realizes a gain, if any, on an investment in a micro-cap company.
Mid-Cap Company Stock Risk. Generally, mid-cap companies may have more potential for growth than large-cap companies. Investing in mid-cap companies, however, may involve greater risk than investing in large-cap companies. Midcap companies may not have the management experience, financial resources, product diversification and competitive strengths of large-cap companies and, therefore, their securities may be more volatile than the securities of larger, more established companies, making them less liquid than other securities. Mid-cap company stocks may also be bought and sold less often and in smaller amounts than larger company stocks. Because of this, if the Portfolio wants to sell a large quantity of a mid-cap company’s stock, it may have to sell at a lower price than the Adviser might prefer, or it may have to sell in smaller than desired quantities over a period of time.
New Adviser Risk. The Adviser has a limited history of managing mutual funds for investors to evaluate.
New Fund Risk. There is limited performance history for investors of the Funds to evaluate.
Non-Diversification Risk. Because the Fund is non-diversified and may invest a greater percentage of its assets in securities of a single issuer and in a relatively small number of issuers, it is more susceptible to risks associated with a single economic, political or regulatory occurrence than a more diversified portfolio. Some of those issuers may also present substantial credit or other risks.
Non-Investment Grade Risk. Investment in non-investment grade debt securities involves greater risk of default or price changes than higher rated debt securities due to changes in the issuer’s creditworthiness or the fact that the issuer may already be in default. The market prices of these securities may fluctuate more than higher quality securities and may decline significantly in periods of general economic difficulty. It may be more difficult to sell or to determine the value of lower rated debt securities.
Political and Economic Risk. Foreign investments may be subject to heightened political and economic risks, particularly in countries with emerging economies and securities markets, which may have relatively unstable governments and economies based on only a few industries. In some countries, there is the risk that the government could seize or nationalize companies, impose additional withholding taxes on dividends or interest income payable on securities, impose exchange controls or adopt other restrictions that could affect the Fund’s investments.
Region Risk. Social, political and economic conditions and changes in regulatory, tax or economic policy in a country or region could significantly affect the market in that country or region. In addition, global economies and financial markets are becoming increasingly interconnected, which increases the possibility that conditions in one country or region might adversely impact the issuers of securities in a different country or region. From time to time, a small number of companies and industries may represent a large portion of the market in a particular country or region, and these companies and industries can be sensitive to adverse social, political, economic or regulatory developments.
Regulatory Risk. Foreign companies not publicly traded in the United States are not subject to accounting and financial reporting standards and requirements comparable to those U.S. companies must meet. In addition, there may be less information publicly available about such companies.
Sector Concentration Risk. At times, the Fund may have a significant portion of its assets invested in securities of companies conducting business in a broadly related group of industries within an economic sector. Companies in the same economic sector may be similarly affected by economic or market events, making the Fund more vulnerable to unfavorable developments in that economic sector than funds that invest more broadly. The more the Fund diversifies its investments, the more it spreads risk and potentially reduces the risks of loss and volatility.
Sector Weightings Risk. Market conditions, interest rates and economic, regulatory or financial developments could significantly affect all the securities in a single sector. If the Fund invests in a few sectors, it may have increased relative exposure to the price movements of those sectors.
Small-Cap Company Stock Risk. Investments in securities of small companies may involve greater risks than investing in large capitalization companies because small companies generally have a limited track record and their shares tend to trade infrequently or in limited volumes.
Stock Market Risk. The Fund’s investments may decline due to movements in the overall stock market.
Stock Selection Risk. The Fund’s investments may decline in value even when the overall stock market is not in a general decline.
Transaction Costs. The costs of buying and selling foreign securities including brokerage, tax and custody costs are generally higher than those for domestic transactions.
Value Investing Risk. Value investing attempts to identify strong companies whose stocks are selling at a discount from their perceived true worth, and is subject to the risk that the stocks’ intrinsic values may never be fully recognized or realized by the market, their prices may go down, or that stocks judged to be undervalued may actually be appropriately priced.