In an effort to make its funds more competitive in the retirement market, AIM Funds will begin waiving a contingent deferred sales charge on C-shares of all of its funds offered in 401(k) and 457 plans that are redeemed by plan sponsors' terminated employees.

The move is an effort on AIM's part to make its C-shares more 'benefits-sensitive' and attractive to financial intermediaries who sell its funds to plan sponsors, according to David Bachert, a spokesperson with the Houston-based fund company. 'We have offered this waiver in our class A-shares but what we've also seen is more financial intermediaries are interested in the C-shares,' he said. 'Thus from a company standpoint it makes the C-shares a little more competitive.'

AIM will waive the charge starting July 13, according to the company filing, posted on the Securities and Exchange Commission's Web site July 6.

The competition for 401(k) assets has grown as new assets diminish, according to Cerulli Associates of Boston. In seven of the past 15 years 401(k) assets grew 25% but last year, assets shrank for the first time by $72 billion.

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