If you invest in a mutual fund, you aren't actually the owner of the assets, the fund is.

Is this different in the case of ETFs? Is the investor the legal owner of the corresponding ETF's underlying assets? If so, can this investor exchange his participation in an ETF by the equivalent assets?

If the above afirmation about ETFs is correct, don't this create an additional risk for mutual fund investors?

  • You're asking a legal question. What country are you in? Apr 23, 2020 at 16:22
  • I'm assuming that it will be mostly the same in all developed countries. In my case, it is UK
    – Martel
    Apr 23, 2020 at 16:24

1 Answer 1


No, it's no different for ETFs. You own units of the ETF, not the stocks themselves. The fund itself (typically a trust) is the legal owner of the stocks (or bonds, or whatever is in the fund).

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