The Securities and Exchange Commission today published a guidance update to clarify what mutual funds and other investment advisors can say on their social media sites.

According to the SEC’s staff, an incidental mention of a specific investment company or family of funds not related to a discussion of the funds’ investments need not be filed with Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

For example: “Fund X Family of Funds invites you to their annual benefit for XYZ Charity” or “More than 100 Fund X employees volunteered for our Annual Day of Caring!”

Also, the incidental use of the word “performance” in connection with a discussion of an investment company or family of funds, without specific mention of a fund’s return (i.e., 1, 5 and 10 year performance) is also kosher, according to the SEC’s latest guidelines. For example: “We update the performance of our funds every month and publish the results on ” and “Click on this link where we provide full details of our yearly perfor¬mance since inception”.

“Today’s inaugural IM Guidance Update on social media is intended to help firms strengthen their compliance efforts by providing meaningful real life examples in a format that is accessible to all on the SEC’s website,” stated Norm Champ, Director of the Division of Investment Management.

 

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