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Rating:January 11, 2001 Not Rated 3.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Thursday, January 11, 2001

January 11, 2001

Reported by Jennifer Beckmann

Fund Fees Much Higher Now, Says SEC
From Wall Street Journal
The Securities and Exchange Commission released a new study on Wednesday addressing the issue of whether or not funds are overcharging investors. According to the report, fees charged investors by mutual funds have declined in recent years but are significantly higher than in the 1970s. The report, under preparation by the SEC staff for two years, didn't reach any conclusion on whether fund fees are too high. But it did offer suggestions to SEC commissioners concerning the use of certain fees as well as the amount of information given to fund investors. The report contained many other recommendations, detailed in this article, all of which require SEC approval.

Fund Firms Downplay Exposure to Calif. Utilties
From Reuters
Several mutual fund companies with large bond portfolios, including Vanguard, Nuveen Investments, and Citigroup, said they hold only small positions in the quickly souring long-term debt of two California utilities, reports Reuters. California has been on the verge of serious power blackouts in recent weeks due to tight supplies of electricity. To meet demand, California utilities have been forced to pay skyrocketing prices for wholesale electricity on the spot market and are not permitted to pass them on to consumers (California's 1996 deregulation law).

Europeans Like Tech Funds
From Wall Street Journal
"Tech is back in fashion" among European investors, reports the Wall Street Journal. Many investors have begun to switch from defensive sectors into seemingly cheap growth stocks in the wake of the U.S. Federal Reserve's rate cut. These include technology, media and telecommunications stocks. The logic is here is that the valuation of stocks that were considered safe (consumer staples, health care, food) has become inflated. And the real bargains are in the growth areas. But timing is still a question, and portfolio rotation remains "a delicate balancing act."  

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