Despite the pall that has fallen over the mutual fund industry amid discoveries of market timing, late trading, disclosure of non-public fund information and inflated commissions to brokers, the industry actually has something to celebrate. The anniversary of the birth of the very first mutual fund will take place next month.

Eighty years ago, on July 15, 1924, MFS Investment Management of Boston launched the first mutual fund, Massachusetts Investors Trust, some 16 years before the birth of the Investment Company Act of 1940. Not surprisingly, the fund, which started as an adjunct to trust law and was created as an investment affiliate for law firms, was greeted with great skepticism, as was the later enacted 40 Act, which at the time was itself highly controversial.

Subscribe Now

Access to premium content including in-depth coverage of mutual funds, hedge funds, 401(K)s, 529 plans, and more.

3-Week Free Trial

Insight and analysis into the management, marketing, operations and technology of the asset management industry.