Open-ended investment company

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Legal Entities of the World™

A spotter’s guide to corporate wildlife


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The Oeic (also known, misleadingly, as the “St. Hellier espievie”) is an animal long rumoured to inhabit the Guernsey scrublands, but which had never been verified before its discovery by maverick Jersey naturalist Ichabod Mourant in the 1950s. Subsequent examination revealed the Oeic to be genetically identical to the Cayman espievie, and debate rages to this day as to how the flightless, defensive and rather stupid animal crossed the nearly 5,000 miles of open Atlantic ocean and managed to establish itself in a markedly different habitat with so little disadvantage.

Most likely the jet stream, trade winds or a similar force majeure event.

Since their discovery Oeics have been successfully domesticated and today are most commonly encountered as open-ended investment companiesinvestment vehicles designed to handle collective investment in transferable securities.

OEICs quote a single price rather than a bid and offer price and they are governed by company law rather than trust law. Most new open-ended funds launched today are established as OEICs and it is expected that, over time, most unit trusts will convert to OEICs.

Trivia point: OEIC was the name of the villainous robot in Muriel Repartee’s 1953 B-grade sci-fi gem The Day of the MiFID.

See also