Financial Literacy - Financial tuneup
investing
Investment glossary of terms

21. Growth fund -- A more speculative and volatile fund with the goal of capital appreciation. These funds invest in companies that are in an expansion period and whose stock is expected to appreciate more than the broad market over the long term.

22. Index -- A selection of companies picked to represent the market or a portion of it. Indexes are used as statistical composites and serve as benchmarks for financial performance.

23. Index fund -- A fund made up of stocks represented in a particular index. Stocks are weighted in the fund proportionally to their representation in the index. Generally, the bigger the company, the higher its weighting.

24. International fund -- A mutual fund or ETF that invests in companies located in countries with developed markets such as Japan, Great Britain and Australia. Companies established in the home country will not be included in these funds.

25. Large cap -- A company with a market capitalization value of more than $10 billion.

26. Life-cycle funds -- A balanced fund targeted to a specific retirement date. The fund manager adjusts the proportions of the asset classes in relation to the fund's time horizon, leaning more heavily toward conservative investments as retirement nears.

27. Lifestyle fund -- An investment meant to be the only holding in a portfolio. They are comprised of a mix of assets targeted to an investor's age, goals and risk tolerance. They are different from life-cycle funds, which automatically shift assets to more conservative investments as the target date of a fund approaches.

28. Load -- A load is a sales charge or commission paid to a broker or sales intermediary, not to the fund. A load that is paid upfront at the time of purchase is called the front-end load. One that is paid upon selling shares held for less than a specified period of time is called the back-end load or contingent deferred sales charge.

29. Market capitalization -- The market value of a company's shares of stock. It is calculated by multiplying the number of outstanding shares by the current market price.

30. Midcap -- A company with a market capitalization between $2 billion and $10 billion.

31. Money market fund -- A fund that invests in short-term debt instruments such as Treasury bills, commercial paper and large CDs. The net asset value is maintained at $1.

32. Mutual fund -- An investment that pools together money from many different investors and puts it into stocks, bonds and other securities or a combination of the three. Mutual funds offer professional management and diversification.

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33. Net asset value -- The value of one share of a mutual fund.

34. No-load fund -- A fund with no sales charge.

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