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Mutual Funds
Edward Jones pays $75M settlement
Brokerage firm reaches agreement with regulators to settle allegations of improper fund marketing.
December 22, 2004: 1:26 PM EST

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Brokerage Edward D. Jones & Co. has agreed to pay $75 million and take corrective measures to settle regulators' allegations of improper mutual fund marketing, market regulators announced on Wednesday.

The announcement, made by the Securities and Exchange Commission, NASD and the New York Stock Exchange, said that Edward Jones also agreed to disclose on its public Web site information regarding revenue sharing payments and hire an independent consultant to review its disclosures.

But Edward Jones -- based in St. Louis, Missouri, and with more than 9,000 offices in the United States, Canada and Britain -- settled the case without admitting or denying the allegations, regulators said.

After months of scandal involving trade abuses in mutual fund shares, the SEC is increasingly targeting misconduct in the relationships between brokerages and mutual funds.

In September, the PIMCO mutual fund groups adviser and two affiliates agreed to pay more than $20 million to settle charges involving failure to disclose payments made to brokers for promoting PIMCO fund shares.

In March, the SEC fined MFS Investment Management $50 million for keeping its trustees and investors in the dark about deals with distributors to sell MFS funds.

In November 2003, Morgan Stanley agreed to pay $50 million to settle charges that it failed to tell investors about compensation it received for selling certain fund shares.

On Monday, California's Attorney General Bill Lockyer rejected speculated $75 million settlement between Edward Jones and the SEC and said the agreement is "inadequate."  Top of page

-- from staff and wire reports

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