Critics Attack SEC For 'Guerrilla Governance' Of Fund Fees

By Dean Seal (April 29, 2020, 2:01 PM EDT) -- A set of financial services industry advocates petitioned the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday to end what they call the "backdoor regulation" of fees that mutual fund managers pay investment advisers.

The petition from groups like the American Securities Association and the New Civil Liberties Alliance attacks the SEC for using its enforcement authority — rather than its rulemaking authority — to refashion the law behind so-called Rule 12b-1 fees, which fund managers pay brokers as a commission for selling their fund.

The agency has undertaken a "30-year effort to effectively outlaw" the fees, but while it has been...

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