The Securities and Exchange Commission is going to revisit 12b-1 fees, according to Andrew Donohue, director of the SEC’s division of investment management, The Wall Street Journal reports.
When the SEC first allowed funds to charge these fees to help pay for sales and marketing, the industry was struggling to attract assets, Donohue noted. In fact, there was concern that the industry would wane.
The industry is now thriving, of course, and many funds use the fees as front-end loads to pay financial advisers, he said. In fact, only about 2% of 12b-1 fees, which amounted to $10.9 billion in 1005, are used for advertising.
Thus, the SEC will reconsider the use of 12b-1 fees and provide some guidance for fund boards in their assessment of them, Donohue said.