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Thursday, November 29, 2007

SEC Summarizes Summary Prospectus

News summary by MFWire's editors

The SEC has published a sample of what the new mutual fund "summary prospectus" should include. The following information is recommended to be included in the short form document: investment objectives; costs; principal investment strategies; risks; performance; top 10 portfolio holdings; identity of investment advisers and portfolio managers; brief purchase, sale, and tax information; and information about broker compensation and conflicts.

The Securities and Exchange Commission has published a prototype “summary prospectus” for mutual funds, and asked for public comment from investors. The proposed streamlined prospectus would let investors quickly learn key information about a mutual fund.

The Commission voted unanimously on November 15 to propose rule amendments that would enable investors to view a concise, plain English summary of key facts about a mutual fund. The SEC is seeking public comment on the proposed rule amendments, including the summary prospectus, which are available online along with additional information to help investors understand and participate in the comment process: http:///www.sec.gov/investor/enhanceddisclosure.htm.

“In three or four pages, an investor could get the important facts about a mutual fund in a quick and convenient way,” said SEC Chairman Christopher Cox. “Instead of digging through pages of legalese, investors would be able to spend more time learning how their money is invested and making informed investment decisions.”

The Commission is proposing that the following information be included in a mutual fund summary prospectus:

* investment objectives
* costs
* principal investment strategies, risks, and performance
* top 10 portfolio holdings
* identity of investment advisers and portfolio managers
* brief purchase, sale, and tax information
* information about broker compensation and conflicts

During the comment period, the Commission is seeking investor input about what improvements would make the summary prospectus easier to read and understand, and what key information investors would like to see included. The Commission also is seeking comment on its proposal for mutual funds to provide investors the summary information while making the full prospectus available online or in paper copy upon request. Comments should be received no later than Feb. 28, 2008.  

Edited by: Erin Kello

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