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Payments from fund or corporate cash flow. May include dividends from earnings, capital gains from sale of portfolio holdings and return of capital. Fund distributions can be made by check or by investing in additional shares. Funds are required to distribute realized capital gains (if any) to shareholders at least once per year if they are not to be taxed by the fund itself. Some corporations offer Dividend Reinvestment Plans (DRP).
Copyright © 2012, Campbell R. Harvey. All Rights Reserved.


1. A situation in which a security's or market's trading volume is higher on a given trading day than the previous trading day without any price appreciation. This is taken as an indicator that the security or market has hit its highest price and will soon decline.

2. The payment of the assets in an IRA or other retirement account to the account holder or his/her beneficiary. Distributions usually begin after retirement, but may begin before with the payment of applicable penalties.

3. A dividend paid to a company's or mutual fund's shareholders.

4. An institution's consistent sale of a single security over a long period of time as opposed to all at once. This is done to avoid causing fluctuations in price. See also: Accumulation.
Farlex Financial Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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