Investors who lost a significant portion of their assets in three high yield municipal bond funds after the Heartland Group of Milwaukee wrote down the NAV on three of its funds last year have recouped at least some of their money, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced.

A receiver recently made a partial cash distribution totaling $7.1 million, the SEC said. Phillip Stern, the court appointed receiver, doled out approximately $4 million to shareholders in the Heartland High-Yield Municipal Fund, $1.3 million to shareholders in the Short Duration High-Yield Municipal Fund and $1.8 million to shareholders in the Taxable Short Duration Municipal Fund.

Heartland was forced to write down the NAVs as a result of inaccurate valuations of illiquid securities and bonds held by the funds. As a result, the High-Yield Bond Fund’s NAV dropped 69%, while the Short Duration and Taxable Short Duration Funds’ NAVs dropped 44% and 6%, respectively.

The distributions were made over a two-day period from Nov. 23 to Nov. 26, Stern said.

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