The NASD fined American Funds Distributors $5 million Wednesday for violating the NASD anti-reciprocal rule that precludes investment companies from directing trades to brokerage firms in exchange for preferential sales treatment for their funds.

In American Funds' case, the firm directed trades to 50 brokerage firms that were top sellers of its products, the NASD charged, paying more than $98 million in trading commissions to the brokers between 2001 and 2003.

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