WASHINGTON - What is becoming a standard business practice in the corporate world - paying independent corporate directors in stock - may become more common in the mutual fund industry.

The SEC is considering a change in securities regulations that will encourage mutual funds to pay their independent directors using mutual fund shares, said Paul Roye, director of the SEC's division of investment management. Roye did not provide details of the possible proposal but said the SEC is considering the change as part of the agency's revision of its regulations intended to strengthen the role of independent mutual fund directors. The SEC expects to propose new rules this summer, Roye said.

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