Articles Tagged with Mutual Funds

Summit Investment Management To Pay Investor $100K 

A Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) panel said that Summit Investment Management and portfolio manager, Thomas Carroll, must pay one firm client $100K for investing his money in funds from the investment manager, LJM Partners, which is no longer in operation. 

The LJM Preservation and Growth Fund (LJMIX) has been named in numerous complaints since early last year when it suffered a huge plunge in value of over 80% in two days. This happened after the CBO Volatility Index experienced a spike. 

The US Securities and Exchange Commission has filed civil charges against Ameriprise Financial Services (AMP). The regulator is accusing the brokerage firm and investment adviser of recommending to retail retirement account customers that they purchase mutual fund shares that charged higher fees. Ameriprise purportedly failed to employ sales charge waivers when applicable.

The Commission’s order contends that the broker-dealer neglected to determine when certain retirement account customers qualified for mutual fund share classes that were not as costly.

Instead, the firm would recommend and sell the more costly mutual fund shares even when the less pricey options were available. Ameriprise is accused of not letting these customers know that the firm would make more from the costly mutual fund shares even as their overall investment returns were harmed.

The SEC said that about 1,971 customer accounts paid nearly $1.8M in up-front sales fees that were not warranted, costlier ongoing fees, “contingent deferred sales charges,” and other expenses because of the way that Ameriprise handled the recommendation and sale of mutual funds to retirement account clients.

The firm is cooperating with the regulator and has paid back customers that were affected with interest. Retirement account customers eligible for the less expensive mutual fund share classes have been moved to those classes free of charge.

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The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is developing regulations that would make sure that mutual funds are liquid enough to satisfy client redemptions and money managers have a plan should a fund fail. Part of the regulator’s strategy may include limiting how mutual funds are allowed to place in assets that are hard-to-sell and use derivatives to enhance returns.

InvestmentNews reports that according to a report issued by the International Monetary Fund last month, mutual funds’ holdings of leveraged loans, junk bonds, and other assets that don’t trade often had higher market and liquidity risks. The IMF said that this could “compromise” financial stability unless the matter is dealt with. Mutual funds also have come under the Financial Stability Oversight Council’s scrutiny.

Per the SEC’s agenda, regulators could propose new mutual fund rules in October of next year. Earlier this year, when Commission Chair Mary Jo White talked about an action plan that the agency was developing to enhance asset management oversight, she noted that the regulator intends to mandate that mutual fund investments provide more disclosures. The SEC has been seeking to gain greater insight into whether the asset management industry presents a risk to the financial system.

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