I was recently browsing through the N-Q that was filed for the Boulder Total Return Fund (BTF) a couple of months ago, and I noticed that several closed-end funds were in the portfolio. This is not all that unusual, but what I found amusing was that the two largest CEF holdings were the Flaherty & Crumrine/Claymore Preferred Securities Income Fund (NYSE:FFC) and the Flaherty & Crumrine/Claymore Total Return Fund (NYSE:FLC).
The reason I found this amusing was that Flaherty & Crumrine used to manage BTF back when it was known as the Preferred Income Management Fund. In the late 1990's Horejsi Inc. bought a huge stake in the fund, and they decided they wanted to take the fund in a new direction away from its original strategy of investing almost exclusively in preferred stocks. The fund had a very contentious proxy battle over board seats, and F&C resigned as advisors after Horejsi won. After this, the investment focus of the fund changed to common stocks, and Stewart Horejsi was appointed as the portfolio manager. (To see how hostile the proxy fight was, see the filings from March and April of 1998. They are very good reading if you like this type of thing.)
While BTF does not have a big percentage of its portfolio invested in the F&C closed-end funds, Boulder does appear to be the largest shareholder in FFC and FLC. I guess this means that Stewart Horejsi has put any differences he had with Flaherty & Crumrine behind him, and now he wants to be friends again.
BTF 1-yr chart: