Mutual Funds

A mutual fund is an investment vehicle comprised of a pool of funds from many investors that buys stocks, bonds and other securities. When you purchase a mutual fund, you get exposure to all the investments in that fund. Mutual funds make it easy to build a diversified portfolio and get professional management, so you don’t have to research, buy, and track every security in the fund.

With thousands of mutual funds to invest in on the market, it can be difficult to find the right mutual funds for your portfolio. FinTrust makes investing in mutual funds easier. We have the tools to research, compare and trade mutual funds all in one place, or the expertise to build and manage a diversified portfolio for you.

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Annuities offer you guaranteed income for life, in any market. At FinTrust, our experts can work with you to see if an annuity would complement your retirement income plan. We work with a variety of annuity and insurance providers to get you a great product at a great rate.

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Options provide investors with flexibility and are often overlooked at a way to generate income from a stock portfolio. Our option strategies are aimed at increasing yield and provide some downside protection during periods of market downturns.

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Bonds and Fixed Income

FinTrust offers an extensive selection of fixed income investments, including bonds, bond funds and ETFs, CDs, and preferred stock. Whether your goal is to diversify your investments, save for the future, receive dependable income, or minimize taxes, fixed income investments may have a place in your portfolio.

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Exchange-traded funds (ETFs)

An ETF, or exchange traded fund, is an investment fund or portfolio of securities that holds assets like stocks, bonds or commodities. Most ETFs track market indexes, from the very broad to the very narrow. ETFs aren’t purchased or sold once a day like a mutual fund, but instead trade like stocks on an exchange and experience price changes throughout the day as shares are bought and sold from one investor to another.

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A stock represents a share in the ownership of a company, including a claim on the company’s earnings and assets. As such, stockholders are partial owners of the company.

Stocks are bought and sold electronically through stock exchanges, the two primary ones in the United States being the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASDAQ).

At FinTrust, we can build and professionally manage a portfolio of individual stocks designed to meet your long-term investment goals. Our portfolios are diversified and designed to perform in all market cycles, and weather volatility so that you can achieve your goals with confidence.

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Municipal Bonds

Municipal bonds, commonly called “Munis”, are bonds issued by states, cities, and other local government agencies. Generally, income from munis is exempt from federal income taxes (“tax exempt”), and the income from municipal bonds may also be exempt from state (“double tax exempt”) and local taxes (“triple tax exempt”) for residents. As a result of this tax treatment, the higher an investor’s tax bracket, the more benefit one might receive. Some municipal bonds, namely “Build America Bonds” are taxable, so an investor must check a bond’s tax status. In addition, due to alternative minimum tax (AMT) rules, the tax status of an individual may influence as to whether the income from municipals is tax advantaged as some municipal bonds are subject to AMT rules.

The term “G.O” states for general obligation. General obligation bonds are backed by the “full faith and credit” of the issuing entity. G.O.s are considered among the most credit worthy municipal securities as they are backed by the taxing power of the issuer.

Revenue municipal bonds are generally considered riskier than G.O. municipal bonds because they are backed only by a dedicated project revenue stream not general taxing powers. Revenue bonds may be further divided into “essential service” revenue bonds or “non-essential” revenue bonds. Examples of “essential service” revenue bonds would include bonds issued by a local water and sewer district or municipal power company, while a “non-essential service” bond might be tied to a local entertainment arena.

Some municipal bond issues carry private insurance against the risk of default (the timely payment of principal and interest). If an insured municipal bond defaults, then the insurance company becomes responsible for the timely payment of principal and interest. During the financial crisis in 2008, many municipal bond insurance companies became distressed, so an investor should understand and research the credit quality of the insurer as well as the credit quality of the issuer of an insured municipal bond.

Master Limited Partnerships (MLP)

A Master Limited Partnership, is a limited partnership that is publically traded on an exchange and which must earn at least 90% or more of its income from qualifying sources from the production, storage, and transportation of depletable natural resources. MLPs are taxed as pass through entities, and therefore must pass through at least 90% of their qualifying income and provide an investor with a Schedule K-1, rather than a Schedule 1099. Since income is not taxed at the corporate level, taxes are calculated at the individual investor’s tax rate. Due to the pass through status, a MLP may generate Unrelated Business Income Tax (UBIT) if held in tax-advantaged accounts. Certain partnership distributions may also be considered a return of capital rather than income as depreciation expenses may exceed income, and thus not subject to taxation until such time as the depreciate or depleted asset is sold.

Then email or call one of our Chartered Financial Analysts at (864) 288-2849.

Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS)

Mortgaged backed securities are similar to bonds, except they are not backed by a specific issuer, instead they rely on the repayment of principal and interest from a pool of mortgage loans. There are many types of mortgage backed securities including residential mortgage back securities (RMBS) which are backed by home loans and commercial mortgage back securities (CMBS) which are backed by the loans on commercial buildings. Mortgage backed securities also carry a wide variety of credit risk as some may be backed by a federal government agency (“agency backed”) while others carry no credit support (“non-agency”) while yet still others focus on particular types of borrowers like “jumbo loans” or “sub-prime” borrowers. An additional consideration in analyzing a mortgage backed security is whether the mortgage loans are “fixed rate” or “floating rate” mortgages.

Ginnie Maes are backed by the “full faith and credit” of the U.S. government. As a result, they are considered among the highest credit quality securities, but that does not mean they are risk-free securities. Generally, Ginnie Maes will trade at a “spread” or premium to treasury securities due to prepayment risk. Since mortgage backed securities are backed by mortgage loans, each month an investor receives principal and interest, however, when a home or building is sold the borrower is responsible for repaying the mortgage. As interest rates fall, borrowers will tend to refinance into lower interest rate mortgages and thereby repay the mortgage bond holder early who will then be faced with investing at lower interest rates.


Our mission is to deliver financial peace-of-mind with unequaled confidence and conviction.

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Phone: 864.288.2849