What is an UCI?

Definition

A mutual fund is an investment fund. At the legal level, there are two main types of UCIs that have the same operating method but a different nature: SICAVs (open-end investment companies) and mutual funds (mutual funds).
A mutual fund allows you to group your investments with those of other investors in a common envelope.

UCI: Which investment funds?

UCIs are divided into two main categories of investment funds: “UCITS” (undertakings for collective investment in transferable securities) and “AIFs” (alternative investment funds).

“UCITS” are so-called “coordinated” funds. This means that they are subject to harmonized investment rules at European level and have a European passport allowing their free marketing in the European Economic Area. These are the only UCIs which, since July 2014, bear the name of UCITS.

“AIFs” are “uncoordinated” funds. These funds have more flexible investment rules than UCITS but do not have a European passport for free marketing to individuals. Among all the AIFs, AIFs open to non-professional investors, with low minimum subscription amounts, include:

general purpose investment funds │ funds of hedge funds │ registered private equity funds: FCPR, FCPI and FIP │ OPCIs (real estate investment trusts) │ REITs (real estate investment trust companies)

  • general purpose investment funds
  • funds of hedge funds
  • registered private equity funds: FCPR, FCPI and FIP
  • OPCIs (real estate collective investment schemes)

  • REITs (civil real estate investment companies)


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At the legal level, UCITS, general purpose investment funds and funds of hedge funds take the form of open-ended investment companies (SICAVs),
mutual funds (FCP).

What is a SICAV?

SICAV (or investment company with variable capital): by investing in a SICAV, you become a shareholder of the SICAV and can participate in its general meetings.
There is a wide variety of SICAVs, including:

SICAVs often include a large number of investors and have a general public management orientation.
Contrary to popular belief, SICAVs are not risk-free products. The value of a SICAV varies according to market fluctuations, or the financial health of companies, governments or communities.

Contrary to popular belief, SICAVs are not risk-free products.
The value of a SICAV varies according to market fluctuations, or the financial health of companies, governments or communities.

What is a FCP?

FCP (or mutual fund) or FCPI (or mutual fund innovation): by investing in a mutual fund, you become co-owner of securities held by the mutual fund. You can not interfere with the management of the fund.

Mutual funds are often a smaller structure than SICAVs (less investors) and less expensive.

They are invested in various markets (bonds, equities, etc.) like SICAVs, most often according to geographical or sectoral criteria.

They are also the main formula funds and diversified funds.

Within mutual funds, there are specialized funds depending on the investment orientation: risk-free mutual funds (FCPR), innovation mutual funds (FCPI) and local investment funds (FIP) )

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