Once reserved for only the wealthiest of individual and institutional investors, private equity funds are now targeting more high-net-worth individuals by slashing the minimum investment to as little as $25,000. That's a far cry from the $10 million ante demanded by some of the more expensive funds.

Fees can be high and so can the risks, but this summer sale could make private equity funds this year's alternative investment of choice for wealthy individuals seeking higher returns, The Wall Street Journal reports.

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