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Rating:A Canary in the Closet-Indexing Coal Mine? Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Wednesday, March 11, 2015

A Canary in the Closet-Indexing Coal Mine?

News summary by MFWire's editors

Active fundsters may want to keep an eye on a Scandinavian class-action fight over mutual fund fees.

Leonid Bershidsky of Bloomberg reports on an $820-million (7 billion Swedish krona) claim filed with the Swedish National Board for Consumer Disputes. Bloomberg worries that the case could be a bad omen for so-called closet indexers around the globe.

3,000 clients Swedbank Robur, Sweden's biggest bank, are accusing the bank's asset management subsidiary of index hugging and thus charging active fees for something that the clients characterize as equivalent to an index fund. The case plays into some active managers recent touting of the concept of "active share", i.e. how far an active manager deviates from their index.

The wire service highlights worries that, on the one hand, regulators might take up the anti-index-hugging cause and, in doing so, make benchmarks less useful to investors as more active managers push further away from those benchmarks. 

Edited by: Neil Anderson, Managing Editor


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