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28 Oct 2011

3 Key Factors to Remember About the Importance of Fund Expenses

Most mutual fund shareholders don’t know what they are being charged for their mutual funds and more importantly, why these expenses are critically important. In normal economic times, when the the economy is healthy, fund fees erode your investment returns, but they are offset by the investment gains. The fees

28 Oct 2011

Why Mutual Fund Expenses Matter to Shareholders

        There are over 8,000 mutual funds in the U.S.* and virtually all of them charge fees to shareholders to help offset their operating expenses. This is a normal cost of doing business. But the mutual fund industry considers itself special.  Over the years, it has lobbied securities

28 Oct 2011

How Much Do Fund Companies Pay in Revenue Sharing?

How much money do 12b-1 fees take from shareholders? An article, American Funds Hit With 12b-1 Lawsuit  (The, July 2, 2008, by Kevin Burke) reported  that American Funds in 2007 paid out over $2 billion in 12b-1 fees  in 2007. This data came to light as an investor in the

28 Oct 2011

Four Things to Avoid When Choosing Mutual Funds

  As the battle for financial reform continues into 2011, the battle lines are clearly drawn: It’s the professional financial services industry against its own customers. While there are pockets of resistance, such as the Americans for Financial Reform, and the Committee for the Fiduciary Standard, have opposed any attempts

28 Oct 2011

Barron’s Publishes Epstein Op-Ed on Need for Mutual Fund Shareholder Advocates

The current (August 27, 2011) issue of Barron’s has published my op-ed,”Why the Fund Industry Needs Shareholder Advocates” in its “Other Voices” section, page 45. The op-ed cites the need for fund companies to more aggressivly demonstrate they are acting in their own customers’ best interests.  While this may seem

28 Oct 2011

Time to Create Shareholder Advocates Inside Mutual Fund Companies

The proposal for creating Shareholder Advocate positions at the nation’s mutual fund companies is designed to correct the inherent conflicts-of-interests that exist between the fund company’s sales organization and its own customers. These conflicts of interest invariably are created when the inherent pressures to sell mutual funds clashes with the




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