SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Despite the lack of a hard-and-fast rule regarding e-mail retention, mutual funds are hard-pressed to get their arms around electronic archiving, a potentially explosive compliance issue that has examiners licking their chops.

The scandals that have pervaded Wall Street in recent years have put e-mail under the microscope, as e-mails have proven to be a window into what goes on behind closed doors at firms entrusted with investor dollars.

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