A mutual fund is sold, not bought, the old saying goes. To that end, it should come as no surprise that some funds are trying to lure new investors and retain existing ones by offering everything from credit cards to free weekends at beach and ski resorts.

In fact, many funds, especially direct-sold groups, have sought alliances with other companies and organizations to either offer added incentive to purchase their funds or create a stronger appeal to a select group of investors.

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