An Open-End Fund
is a mutual fund
which can issue and redeem shares at any time. Most well-known funds, such as Fidelity's Magellan, Vanguard's S&P 500, and PIMCO Total Return, are open-end funds. An investor can purchase shares in such funds directly from the mutual fund company, or through a brokerage
house. There may be a percentage charge levied on purchase or sale of shares--in this case, the fund is a "load fund"; if there are no such charges levied, the fund is "no-load." However, brokerages may charge commissions for the purchase of even no-load funds, and there may also be other fees associated with no-load funds, such as yearly maintenance fees in IRA
accounts and redemption fees designed to discourage shareholders from jumping in and out of funds in an attempt at market timing.
The price per share, or NAV (net asset value), is calculated by dividing the fund's assets minus liabilities by the number of shares outstanding. This is usually calculated at the end of every trading day.