Mutual Funds

News & Analysis as of

Closed End Funds

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) has, in recent months, increased its regulatory focus on investor awareness regarding closed-end funds (“CEFs”). In October of last year, FINRA issued an Investor Alert...more

Thomson Reuters Session 2: Investment Management, Hedge Funds and Registered Mutual Funds: What's Happening Now?  [Video]

Pepper partner Gregory J. Nowak has regularly hosted a roundtable in Pepper’s New York office for private funds and their managers to discuss issues in the investment management world. He has recently started to give a...more

Mutual Fund Directors Forum Issues Report on Director Oversight of Mutual Funds Focused on Non-Traditional Assets and Strategies

The Mutual Fund Directors Forum issued a report designed to provide practical guidance to mutual fund directors about overseeing “alternative funds.” The report treats as an “alternative fund” any registered open-end fund...more

Future Threats That a 401(k) Plan Sponsor Should Be Aware Of

What was good yesterday might not be a good today. Asbestos was a great fireproof building material until it was found to cause asbestosis and malignant mesothelioma Thalidomide was a great drug for morning sickness until it...more

Financial Services Quarterly Report - Fourth Quarter 2013: Widening Distribution Channels for Mutual Funds in China

Prior to 2013, the door to the People’s Republic of China’s domestic mutual fund market was closed to outsiders. Foreign fund managers had only one choice: to team up with local Chinese managers in joint ventures, controlled...more

Things They Never Tell You as a 401(k) Plan Sponsor

When my wife and I bought our house, there were quite a few things that the previous owner forgot to tell us such as the fact they never bothered to pull the pipes from the dental office run by a previous owner 20 years...more

Regulatory Proceedings and Class Actions: The Supreme Court of Canada Speaks on Preferable Procedure

On December 12, 2013, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) released its fourth major class action decision in two months: AIC Limited et al v Dennis Fischer et al (Fischer). This case concerns whether a class action is the...more

Insight on Estate Planning - Year End 2013: Estate Planning Pitfall: Your estate plan leaves specific assets to specific heirs

Planning an estate around specific assets is risky and, in most cases, should be avoided. If specific assets — such as homes, cars or stock — are left to specific people, they may end up being disinherited. This article...more

Possible PFIC, Possible Relief

Many a US taxpayer who holds shares in a Canco may be subject to the onerous US passive foreign investment company (PFIC) tax regime. Although the PFIC rules are designed to eliminate the benefit of a US tax deferral on...more

Second Circuit Rules for Mutual Fund Trustees in Suit Alleging Breach of Fiduciary Duty in Approving Successor Advisory Contracts...

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal on a motion for summary judgment of a derivative suit against the independent trustees of a mutual fund group in which the plaintiff shareholder alleged...more

MFDF Updates Best Practices – Fund Directors Should Be Independent and Fully Informed

The Mutual Fund Directors Forum updated its best practices recommendations for mutual fund directors. The October 13 report, Practical Guidance for Mutual Fund Directors – Board Governance and Review of Investment Advisory...more

Dechert Submits Comment Letter to the SEC that is Highly Critical of the Office of Financial Research’s Report on “Asset...

Thomas P. Vartanian, Chair of Dechert’s Financial Institutions practice, responded to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's (SEC) request for comments, on behalf of certain clients, by comprehensively criticizing the...more

Financial Fraud Law Report: October 2013 - Insider Trading in Mutual Funds: Do Traditional Theories Apply?

A federal court of appeals recently held out the possibility that insider trading prohibitions — at least under the classic theory — do not apply to mutual fund redemptions. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh...more

Seventh Circuit Again Grants Class Certification In Excessive Fee Case

On remand from the Seventh Circuit, a federal district court in Illinois granted class certification in a case where participants in a Boeing 401(k) plan alleged that Boeing breached its fiduciary duties under ERISA by: (i)...more

SEC Sanctions Investment Adviser for Pushing Class A Shares When Investors Qualified to Buy Institutional Class Shares

The Securities and Exchange Commission sanctioned an investment adviser and its owner for failing to seek best execution and breaching their fiduciary duty in selecting mutual fund share classes for three advisory...more

Financial Services Quarterly Report - Third Quarter 2013: Recent Developments in the Hong Kong Funds Industry

The Hong Kong Government has been keen to demonstrate its willingness to evolve and focus its efforts on the overall growth of the Hong Kong financial services industry. Recent proposals to make fund-friendly changes to Hong...more

A Compilation of Enforcement and Non-Enforcement Actions - September 30, 2013

Non-Enforcement Matters - SEC to Monitor Fund Performance Claims - Suit Against Exchange Traded Funds’ Investment Adviser Dismissed - Counterparty Risk Management Practices for Mutual...more

DOL Issues Advisory Opinion Regarding Use of a Mutual Fund “Summary Prospectus” under PTE 77-4

The Department of Labor (the “DOL”) recently issued Advisory Opinion 2013-04A clarifying mutual fund prospectus delivery requirements under section II(d) of Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption 77-4 (“PTE 77-4”). PTE 77-4...more

DOL Issues Advisory Opinion Regarding Use of a Mutual Fund “Summary Prospectus” under PTE 77-4

The Department of Labor (the “DOL”) recently issued Advisory Opinion 2013-04A clarifying mutual fund prospectus delivery requirements under section II(d) of Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption 77-4 (“PTE 77-4”). PTE 77-4...more

Debt Markets: Taper Your Enthusiasm – An Update

The debt markets have outperformed themselves during 2013, harkening back to the boom years of 2005 through 2007. That is, if you measure performance by the amount of liquidity in the market. In the context of an...more

High Court's Decision Next Term May Increase Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Litigation

This November, in Lawson v. FMR LLC, the United States Supreme Court will hear argument on whether “whistleblowers” employed by a privately held contractor or subcontractor of a publicly traded company are protected from...more

Court Affirms Standard Of Review For Decisions Of Securities Commissions Is Reasonableness

The Appellants, Sanji Sawh and Vlad Trkulja, who were both mutual fund dealers and exempt market dealers, founded Investment House of Canada (“IHOC”) in 2003....more

CFTC’s Final 'Harmonization' Rules: Shifting Sands in the ETF Competitive Landscape

Background - The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) caused quite a stir in 2012 when it changed its rules to require investment advisers to mutual funds that invest to any significant degree in derivatives, to...more

Update on the Hong Kong-PRC Mutual Fund Recognition Scheme

It has been a busy summer for securities regulators in Hong Kong and on the Mainland. Recent press coverage indicates that the regulators are closer now to making the Mutual Fund Recognition Scheme (the “Scheme”) a reality,...more

Insider Trading in Mutual Funds: Do Traditional Theories Apply?

A federal court of appeals held out the possibility that insider trading prohibitions – at least under the classic theory – do not apply to mutual fund redemptions. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit...more

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