An investment fund that arranges for the publication of its net asset value per security should calculate its net asset value per security and make the results of that calculation available to the financial press as quickly as is commercially practicable. An investment fund should attempt to meet the deadlines of the financial press for publication in order to ensure that its net asset values per security are publicly available as quickly as possible.
Section 14.2 of the Instrument requires an investment fund to calculate its net asset value based on the fair value of the investment fund’s assets and liabilities. This may differ from the calculation of “current value” for financial statement purposes. Section 3.6 of the Instrument requires an explanation of this difference.While investment funds are required to comply with the definition of “fair value” in the Instrument when calculating net asset value, they may also look to the Handbook for guidance on the measurement of fair value. The fair value principles articulated in the Handbook can be applied by investment funds when valuing assets and liabilities.
(1) A market is generally considered active when quoted prices are readily and regularly available from an exchange, dealer, broker, industry group, pricing service or regulatory agency, and those prices reflect actual and regularly occurring market transactions on an arm’s length basis. Accordingly, fair value should not reflect the amount that would be received or paid in a forced transaction, involuntary liquidation or distress sale.
(2) A market is not considered to be active, and prices derived from it may be unreliable for valuation purposes, if, at the time the investment fund begins to calculate its net asset value, any of the following circumstances are present:
- markets on which portfolio securities are principally traded closed several hours earlier (e.g. some foreign markets may close as much as 15 hours before the time the investment fund begins to calculate its net asset value)
- trading is halted
- events occur that unexpectedly close entire markets (e.g. natural disasters, power blackouts, public disturbances, or similar major events)
- markets are closed due to scheduled holidays
- the security is illiquid and trades infrequently.
If an investment fund manager determines that an active market does not exist for a security, the manager should consider whether the last available quoted market price is representative of fair value. If a significant event (i.e. one that may impact the value of the portfolio security) has occurred between the time the last quoted market price was established and the time the investment fund begins to calculate its net asset value, the last quoted market price may not be representative of fair value.
(3) Whether a particular event is a significant event for a security depends on whether the event may affect the value of the security. Generally, significant events fall into one of three categories: (i) issuer specific events – e.g. the resignation of the CEO or an after-hours earnings announcement, (ii) market events – e.g. a natural disaster, a political event, or a significant governmental action like raising interest rates, and (iii) volatility events – e.g. a significant movement in North American equity markets that may directly impact the market prices of securities traded on overseas exchanges.
Whether a market movement is significant is a matter to be determined by the manager through the establishment of tolerance levels which it may choose to base on, for example, a specified intraday and/or interday percentage movementof a specific index, security or basket of securities. In all cases, the appropriate triggers should be determined based on the manager’s own due diligence and understanding of the correlations relevant to each investment fund’s portfolio.
The CSA do not endorse any particular fair value technique as we recognize that this is a constantly evolving process. However, whichever technique is used, it should be applied consistently for a portfolio security throughout the fund complex and reviewed for reasonableness on a regular basis.
An investment fund’s valuation policy should be approved by the manager’s board of directors. The policies and procedures should describe the process for monitoring significant events or other situations that could call into question whether a quoted market price is representative of fair value. They should also describe the methods by which the manager will review and test valuations to evaluate the quality of the prices obtained as well as the general functioning of the valuation process. The manager should also consider whether its valuation process is a conflict of interest matter as defined in NI 81-107.