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Eaton Vance Files Amended Exemptive Application For Exchange-Traded Managed Funds

Stocks in this article: EV

BOSTON, Sept. 12, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Eaton Vance Management (Eaton Vance), a subsidiary of Eaton Vance Corp. (NYSE: EV), today announced that it has filed an amended application with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) seeking exemptive relief to permit the offering of exchange-traded managed funds (ETMFs).  The amended application amends and supplements the ETMF exemptive application filed on March 27, 2013.

ETMFs are a proposed new type of open-end fund designed to bring the cost and tax efficiencies and shareholder protections of the exchange-traded fund (ETF) structure to active investment strategies, while maintaining the confidentiality of current portfolio trading information. ETMFs would trade on an exchange at prices directly linked to the fund's next-determined daily net asset value (NAV), using what is referred to as "NAV-based trading." In NAV-based trading, prices would vary from NAV by a market-determined premium or discount, which may be zero.  Because ETMFs would provide market makers with opportunities to earn reliable arbitrage profits without intraday hedging of their inventory positions, they can be expected to trade at consistently tight spreads to NAV in the absence of full holdings disclosure.  

Active fund managers have to date largely avoided introducing their leading strategies as transparent ETFs because the required daily holdings disclosures can facilitate front-running of portfolio trades and enable copycat investors to replicate a fund's portfolio positioning.  By removing the requirement for daily portfolio transparency, ETMFs can potentially enable investors to access a broad range of proven active strategies through a vehicle that provides the investor benefits of an exchange-traded fund.

Eaton Vance seeks to launch a family of ETMFs that mirror existing Eaton Vance mutual funds and to license the underlying technology to other fund groups through its subsidiary Navigate Fund Solutions LLC (Navigate).  Aspects of ETMFs and NAV-based trading are protected intellectual property subject to issued and pending U.S. patents. 

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