The Securities and Exchange Commission and the New York Stock Exchange last week fined Fidelity Brokerage Services $2 million for destroying or altering records in at least 21 of its 88 branch offices.

In a joint investigation, the SEC and NYSE found that between January 2001 and July 2002, at least 62 employees destroyed or tampered with books and records in advance of internal inspections after the employees found they were incomplete or not in accordance with company policies. Bowing to pressure from managers to have perfect records, they destroyed new account applications, authorization letters, variable annuity forms and other documents, the SEC and NYSE charged.

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