Bank One Forsees Regulation
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Monday, December 01, 2003

Bank One Forsees Regulation

Last Wednesday, Bank One acknowledged that its involvement in the Canary affair has begun to hit home.

Only a day before Thanksgiving, Dave Kundert, president of One Group, Bank One's mutual fund unit, told the company to "anticipate enforcement action against Bank One's mutual fund advisor," Dow Jones reports.

Kundert also said that the firm hopes to avoid "regulatory litigation and reach an amicable resolution with regulators over the next several months."

In the meantime, the firm has begun rolling out a number of new measures to ensure fair fund practices. First, the company plans to elect a new board of independent directors and has added two new positions, chief compliance officer and chief legal officer which will report to the board.

Second, the firm plans to add redemption fees to several of its funds, and will require employees of the fund company to buy One Group fund shares through Banc One Securities Corp. accounts or directly through One Group. They will also be required to hold their One Group funds for at least 90 days.

Third, Kundert said Banc One Investment Advisors will renegotiate its soft dollar arrangements so that research services are paid for by the investment adviser. Going forward, portfolio holdings will be disclosed quarterly on the fund company's Web site, and quarterly proxy vote disclosures will begin in January.

Also, portfolio manager compensation will be disclosed in fund prospectuses. In the coming weeks, the company plans to detail its revenue sharing agreements and says it plans to work to improve investor awareness of breakpoint discounts.

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