Investment trusts are the most established of the investment vehicles having been around for over 150 years, and today can invest in everything from UK dividends to high-risk emerging markets.
They are public limited companies (PLCs) which aim to produce returns by investing in other income-producing companies, with shares in the trust sold to investors.
A real-estate investment trust is a company that owns or finances income-producing real estate.
REITs are the same as investment trusts, but instead of owning a basket of stocks, the REIT owns a portfolio of commercial or residential properties or mortgages. Shares in a REIT can be purchased in the same way as ordinary shares or an ETF.