Developing a plan and sticking to it has proven to be the best recipe to achieve one’s long-term investment goals. But sticking to the plan can be difficult.

With market risks and changing outlooks, investors are often tempted to make changes to their investment mix too frequently, which can jeopardize long-term goals. Defined outcome investing allows investors the ability to define the parameters of an investment objective and seeks to achieve a predetermined outcome in a predetermined time period. In other words, it allows an investor to customize their investment around a defined set of parameters (the outcome), providing market exposure with greater control in limiting losses.


Benefits of defined outcome investing

1  Aligned with your goals 

Investments that are aligned with your investment objectives or market outlook.

2  Customized

Select the equity market exposure you are seeking  and customize according to your risk tolerance and investment time horizon; defined maturity dates can also align with your goals, market views, and liquidity needs.

3  Downside protection

Select a predetermined degree of downside protection: full, partial, or none at all.

4  Fiduciary approach

Full transparency on fees and holdings; no early redemption penalties or charges.


There are three primary outcomes that investors may customize to suit their risk/return profiles:

Preservation Strategies

Market exposure with compelling downside protection.

Buffer Strategies

Market exposure with insulation from a specified amount of loss.

Growth Strategies

Enhanced market exposure with no downside protection.


The strategies discussed on this page are offered via Unit Investment Trust (UIT).

A UIT is a professionally selected, pooled investment vehicle in which a portfolio of securities is selected by the sponsor and deposited into the trust for a specified period of time. Generally, a UIT portfolio is not actively traded and follows a buy and hold strategy. A UIT is registered with the SEC as a Registered Investment Company (RIC) or Grantor trust. Trusts are categorized into these two different structures, based on the underlying holdings, for tax purposes. Consult your financial advisor for primary differences between these two structures. The portfolio will generally remain fixed until the termination of the trust, usually ranging from 13 months to five years. Some UITs, composed of fixed income securities, may have longer maturities depending on the underlying securities. As the underlying bonds in the portfolio mature or are called in early, principal is returned to the investor. Although the securities within the trust generally remain fixed and are not managed, the sponsor may remove a security from the trust under limited circumstances. These situations are outlined in the prospectus.


The portfolio is designed to follow an investment objective over a specified time period, although there is no guarantee that the objective will be met. UITs are created by a trust sponsor who enters into an agreement with a trustee. When the trust is created, several investment terms are set forth, such as the trust objective, what securities are placed in the trust, when the trust will end, what fees and expenses will be charged, etc. A full accounting of the terms of the trust will be listed in the prospectus. Some UITs follow rules-based stock selection strategies, which have hypothetical performance records dating back over several decades; this information can help investors decide if the investment strategy might be appropriate for their objectives and goals. Keep in mind that hypothetical performance, like any past performance, does not guarantee future results, which will differ from actual past performance.


The popularity of unit investment trusts results from many investor benefits and features including professional selection, diversification, daily pricing and redemption, and ease of purchase. Investors should note that diversification does not ensure a profit or guarantee against a loss.


While past performance is not indicative of future results, a UIT’s long-term performance record is also likely to be factored into the selection criteria. Your financial advisor will help you compare and review UITs in light of your investment objectives and risk tolerances.


Since UITs have a fixed time horizon, investors at termination can elect to use the proceeds of the terminating trust to purchase a new UIT or the proceeds will be credited into the investor’s account at the net asset value. Prior to the trust’s termination, investors may sell/redeem their UIT shares at the NAV less any deferred sales charges, if applicable. Selling UITs prior to maturity may increase the annualized costs. The proceeds from the sale will be credited to the investor’s account two business days after the sale (T+2). Also, under limited circumstances, certain trusts allow investors to elect to receive their pro-rata shares in-kind, but this may create a taxable event.


UIT sponsors generally offer successive “series” of each UIT, giving you an option of reinvesting in the same objective or strategy with an updated portfolio of securities.


The structure of these securities may be complex, and the suitability of an investment should be considered based on your investment objective, risk tolerance, financial goals and time horizons. You should consider the portfolio’s investment objective, risks, fees and expenses carefully before investing. Contact your financial advisor to request a prospectus, which will contain this and other information about the portfolio. Read it carefully before you invest. This communication shall not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy. This email is intended only for the person to whom it has been originally provided and under no circumstance may a copy be emailed, shown, copied, transmitted, reproduced or otherwise given to or used by, in whole or in part, any person other than the authorized recipient.


Investing involves risk, including possible loss of principal.


A unit investment trust (UIT) is a professionally selected, pooled investment vehicle in which a portfolio of securities is selected by the sponsor and deposited into the trust for a specified period of time. Generally, a UIT portfolio is not actively traded and follows a buy and hold strategy. A UIT is registered with the SEC as a Registered Investment Company (RIC) or Grantor trust.


Potential Risks of Defined Outcome UITs include:

  • Must Be Held for Outcome Period.
  • Defined outcome strategies are designed for investors who intend to purchase at inception and hold until maturity. If held for less than the entire holding period, the investment will experience different results.
  • Defined outcome strategies are designed for investors who intend to purchase at inception and hold until maturity. If held for less than the entire holding period, the investment will experience different results.
  • Slippage Risk. While the strategy is designed to deliver the outcomes outlined in the applicable prospectus, there is no guarantee that it will. Because of expenses and the potential impact of redeeming holders on the remaining holders, the strategy may not be able to provide the estimated outcomes for investors holding their investments until maturity.
  • Capped Upside: Unitholders may be subject to an upside return cap that represents the maximum percentage return that can be achieved from an investment in the UIT over the life of the trust, before fees and expenses.
The structure of these securities may be complex, and the suitability of an investment should be considered based on your investment objective, risk tolerance, financial goals and time horizons. You should consider the portfolio’s investment objective, risks, fees and expenses carefully before investing. Contact your financial advisor to request a prospectus, which will contain this and other information about the portfolio. Read it carefully before you invest. This communication shall not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of any offer to buy. This email is intended only for the person to whom it has been originally provided and under no circumstance may a copy be emailed, shown, copied, transmitted, reproduced or otherwise given to or used by, in whole or in part, any person other than the authorized recipient.