Saturday, March 10, 2007

The NAV Premium For The Templeton Russia Fund (TRF) Has Plummeted in 2007

The Templeton Russia and Eastern Europe closed-end fund (symbol: TRF) has plummeted since the start of 2007. This has happened despite the fact that the Russia stock market has been strong so far this year. As of February 28, 2007, TRF is down 18.85%, dropping from $87.30 to $70.84 since the start of 2007. The Net Asset Value ("NAV") of TRF, on the other hand, has risen 2.96%, from $63.23 to $65.08. A chart of the TRF share price and its NAV is shown below (FYI, I copied this chart from ETF Connect).

As I have discussed previously, closed end funds almost always trade at a discount or premium to their NAVs. The vast majority of closed end funds trade at a discount to their NAVs. TRF is one of the rare ones that typically trades at a premium. Between the start of 2007 and February 28, 2007, TRF's premium dropped from 38.07% to 8.85%, a drop of nearly 30%, as shown below.
I suspect that most of the compression in TRF's share price is over. TRF has typically traded at a premium of around 10-15% over the past few years and I see no reason as to why this trend will be broken now.

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