E*Trade Group plans a partial rebate of 50% of the 12b-1 and shareholder service agreement (SSA) fees to shareholders that it collects from mutual fund companies for distributing and servicing their respective funds.

The online brokerage said that it is an attempt to both boost the number of clients trading mutual funds on its service, as well as ramp up the average asset size of existing mutual fund accounts, while helping investors increase their overall earnings. The firm said it expects to start the rebate on a semi-annual basis by the end of the year. The money will be rebated to investors in the form of cash credited to investors' E*Trade accounts.

"We have consistently demonstrated our ability to leverage our technology as a differentiator to scale effectively," Mitchell H. Caplan, chief executive of the firm, said in a statement.

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