October 5, 2004 - First Asset Funds Inc. is pleased to announce that a preliminary prospectus for First Asset Equal Weight REIT Income Fund (the "Fund") has been filed with the securities regulatory authorities of all the Canadian provinces for an initial public offering of trust units.
The Fund is designed to provide unitholders with high levels of tax efficient monthly cash distributions by investing in an equally weighted diversified portfolio of real estate income trusts ("REITs") using a passive investment approach and to provide the benefit of low management fees of 0.45%.
The Fund's portfolio will be comprised of an approximate equal dollar amount of securities of each REIT listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange that pays a regular distribution and that has a market capitalization of at least $300 million at the time of investment. The portfolio will be rebalanced annually to adjust for changes in market capitalizations, to add newly qualified REITs and to remove those REITs that cease to qualify under the Fund's investment guidelines. As at September 27, 2004, there were 19 qualifying REITs. As a result of the equal weight approach, each REIT would constitute approximately 5.3% of the portfolio.
Prospective purchasers may purchase trust units either by cash payment or by an exchange of units of any REITs to be included in the portfolio, as described in the preliminary prospectus.
First Asset Funds Inc., the manager of the Fund, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of First Asset Management Inc. ("First Asset"). First Asset is an integrated wealth management company that has acquired top tier investment management firms in Canada, rapidly growing to become a leading Canadian asset management company with approximately $26 billion in assets under management or administration as at August 31, 2004.
The syndicate of agents for this offering is being led by CIBC World Markets Inc. and RBC Dominion Securities Inc., and includes BMO Nesbitt Burns Inc., TD Securities Inc., National Bank Financial Inc., Scotia Capital Inc., HSBC Securities (Canada) Inc., Canaccord Capital Corporation, Desjardins Securities Inc., Dundee Securities Corporation, First Associates Investments Inc., Raymond James Ltd. and Wellington West Capital Inc.
For further information, please contact First Asset Funds Inc. at (416) 642-1289 or 1-877-642- 1289.