The Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday distributed $31.5 million to more than 150,000 MFS Investments investors whose holdings were negatively impacted by market timing in the funds.

It was the first payment of a total $306 million that the Commission will make. Since the passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in 2002, the SEC has returned more than $3.2 billion to injured investors through fair fund distributions.

“We are very pleased to begin distributing the MFS fair fund to investors injured by past market-timing misconduct,” said David Bergers, director of the SEC’s Boston regional office.

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