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Rating:JP Morgan, One Group Funds Outline Merger Plans Not Rated 3.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Tuesday, August 31, 2004

JP Morgan, One Group Funds Outline Merger Plans

by: Theresa Sim

The J.P. Morgan and One Group fund groups will merge, combine operations, reduce fees, and vote on a combined fund board, the fund companies disclosed in a filing.

Beginning in February, approximately 40 funds will be merged and all funds will be branded under the JPMorgan Funds Name, George C.W. Catch, head of the combined funds group, told the WSJ.

Gatch will officially be named president of the One Group fund family on September 15, taking the place of David Kundert. Kundert is retiring.

One Group Administrators will become the administrator of both fund groups effective February 19, 2005. Also on February 19, One Group Dealer Services will become the distributor for the combined funds.

JPMorgan Funds will ditch current transfer agent DST Systems and One Group will drop State Street. The transition to the combined fund family's new transfer agent, Boston Financial, is expected by February 2005.

The One Group funds will transfer custody of funds to JPMorgan Chase Bank from State Street Bank and Trust beginning in October.

The fund families will also institute a series of fund pricing changes, including lowering the complex-wide administration fee; charging the same custody, fund accounting and transfer agent fees; lowering JPMorgan Funds' Class A shares sales charges to match the One Group funds' charges; and lowering the advisory fees on many One Group funds.

The lowered fees will take effect on February 19, 2005.

Shareholders will vote to elect a 13-member board -- choosing five from the pool of seven directors of the One Group Mutual Funds board and eight from the ten directors of the JPMorgan Funds board. The new board members will take office on February 19, 2005.

The advisors to the funds, JPMorgan Investment Management and Banc One Investment Advisors, will retain their independence, the company stated in the filing. Both will manage the funds.

The two companies merged on July 1.

JPMorgan had $108 billion in assets at the end of July, while the One Group had $101 billion. 

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