Janus Capital has proposed changes in the fee structure of some of its mutual funds to reflect their performance against benchmarks.

The Denver fund company filed a preliminary fund proxy Thursday with the Securities and Exchange Commission that would ask shareholders to support performance-based management fees on 13 of its 59 long-term fund portfolios.

The fees would be higher when the funds outperform their benchmarks and lower when the funds underperform. Shelley Peterson, a spokeswoman for Janus, said the changes were driven by the company's independent trustees. Depending on the success of the proposed change, she said, the fee structure might be extended to more funds.

Janus selected a cross-section of portfolios for the initial program, Peterson said, including its Worldwide Fund, which has underperformed relative to its benchmark.

The fee structure would affect 30% of Janus' $130 billion of assets under management, Peterson said. The company's managed asset total has declined steadily from the $300 billion-plus mark it reached in early 2000. Janus had $8.4 billion of outflows in the first seven months of this year, according to data from Financial Research Corp., a Boston company that tracks fund flows.

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