Wielding their $1 trillion clout, state pension leaders and treasurers partnered with New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer recently to tear into the SEC's proposed fund reforms.

Announcing their new Mutual Fund Protection Principles at a press conference in New York, Spitzer and state chief investment officers from his state, as well as North Carolina and California, attested that the SEC's proposed reforms (see MME 1/19/04) do not go far enough.

Among the further reforms that they want are fund disclosure of stock holdings, trading costs and a full accounting of soft-dollar expenditures - as well as the dollar amount of fees that fund companies and/or their selling partners automatically debit from investor accounts.

These new principles would apply to every single fund managed by state and public pension funds, including 401(k)s, 403(b)s and 457s. While the officials did not name 529 college savings plans, in most states, these fall under the purview of treasurers. Present at the press conference were New York State Comptroller Alan Hevesi, California Treasurer Phil Angelides and North Carolina Treasurer Richard Moore.

Copyright 2004 Thomson Media Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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