No shareholder has won a lawsuit against a mutual fund company on excessive fees since the standard for arms-length negotiations was set by Gartenberg v. Merrill Lynch in 1982, and the Jones v. Harris Associates case scheduled to be heard by the Supreme Court on Monday is not expected to reverse that.

Harris is likely to rely on the standard argument that boards negotiate fees fairly at arms’ length, that the industry is highly competitive, that retail investors demand more service and therefore should pay higher fees and, finally, that the Gartenberg case sets a precedent that would be dangerous to go against as it would merely result in a rash of lawsuits and, ironically, higher fees.

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