Evergreen Investments agreed to pay a $4.2 million civil penalty to the NASD over directed-brokerage practices by its broker/dealer distributor. At question in such practices is brokerages' acceptance of trades from mutual fund complexes in exchange for promoting their funds, without revealing the practice to investors.

Evergreen made the disclosure through a letter from Chief Executive Officer Dennis H. Ferro on the company website. Ferro noted that the interpretation of NASD rules was "uncertain," as well as that litigating with the NASD would take up much of the company's "time, resources and attention." Ferro also said the firm does not believe that the practice adversely affected the performance of the funds and that the settlement won't affect shareholders monetarily.

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