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BREAKING NEWS: Implications of the SEC’s just released Mutual Fund Guidance

The long awaited result of the SEC’s distribution in guise sweeps hit today; you can find the link here.  Many of the points covered were expected, and most of the requirements for compliance identified are currently supported by the Oversight platform Delta Data actually developed in anticipation of this guidance. Here is the overarching theme in this news: the 12b1 plan represents the only funds that can be used for distribution expense, and anything that promotes sales in any way, whether direct or indirect, must be allocated as an expense to the advisor and/or other relevant service providers, not the fund. Fees related to distribution in excess of the 12b1 plan must be allocated to the advisor and/or other relevant service providers.

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Whitfield Athey
Whitfield Athey is CEO of Delta Data Software. His role at Delta Data is focused on growth of the product base, satisfaction of clients and scalability of the organization.

Meeting the Needs of an Industry via Innovative Software Products: Mandates versus Evolution – Part 2

This is the second part of a two part posts concerning risks associated with developing new software products under two different scenarios: mandates and evolution. In the first part we discussed developing products due to mandates; in this second part we’ll explore developing products due to industry evolution. This discussion will be supported with examples of actual Delta Data Software products. Read more

Burton Keller
L. Burton Keller was a principal founder of the company in 1985 and currently focuses on strategic initiatives for the company. Mr. Keller also serves as company representative to the DTCC and is an active member of the Bank, Trust and Retirement Advisory Committee of the Investment Company Institute.

Meeting the Needs of an Industry via Innovative Software Products: Mandates versus Evolution – Part 1

Much to her chagrin, I have told my wife many times that operating a software products company is like being a riverboat gambler. It is exciting, risky, and involves timing, industry savvy and a good relationship with Lady Luck (she hates it when I mention other women!) As a software product company focused 100% on the mutual fund and pooled products industry, Delta Data will generally see software development opportunities emerge in two distinct ways. First, there are the opportunities that present themselves as a result of mandated legislation. Then there are the opportunities that are discovered through an evolution within the industry itself. Each of the two opportunities has its pros and cons. To be successful, software companies need to recognize these opportunities and bring innovative products to the market faster and better than the bigger fish in the pond. Of course this innovation involves risk, hence the relationship with gambling. Read more

Burton Keller
L. Burton Keller was a principal founder of the company in 1985 and currently focuses on strategic initiatives for the company. Mr. Keller also serves as company representative to the DTCC and is an active member of the Bank, Trust and Retirement Advisory Committee of the Investment Company Institute.

401(k) Plans With Employer Stock – A Vanishing Breed

In my last blog article, I talked about how retirement plans had evolved from employer sponsored and employer run profit sharing plans into outsourced participant directed 401(k) plans. One of the big differences between the old profit sharing plans and today’s 401(k) plan that I did not get to mention in the last article is the use of employer stock in the retirement plan. Read more

Burton Keller
L. Burton Keller was a principal founder of the company in 1985 and currently focuses on strategic initiatives for the company. Mr. Keller also serves as company representative to the DTCC and is an active member of the Bank, Trust and Retirement Advisory Committee of the Investment Company Institute.

Watching the Pendulum Swing on 401(k) Plan Expenses

There have been several articles in the news recently about how mutual fund expense ratios are continuing to drop for 401(k) plan participants. These were based on a report issued by the Investment Company Institute in August 2015 called Read more

Burton Keller
L. Burton Keller was a principal founder of the company in 1985 and currently focuses on strategic initiatives for the company. Mr. Keller also serves as company representative to the DTCC and is an active member of the Bank, Trust and Retirement Advisory Committee of the Investment Company Institute.

SEC “Distribution in Guise” Sweep

There has been a lot of news recently about the SEC sweeps where they are looking at fund companies that may be paying out distribution fees but disguising them as servicing fees. With all that the SEC has on their plate, you may be asking yourself, “why is this so important to them”? Well, the SEC Read more

Burton Keller
L. Burton Keller was a principal founder of the company in 1985 and currently focuses on strategic initiatives for the company. Mr. Keller also serves as company representative to the DTCC and is an active member of the Bank, Trust and Retirement Advisory Committee of the Investment Company Institute.

The Motivations behind the SEC “Distribution in Guise” Sweeps

The biggest and most vexing news concerning mutual funds this year involves a three letter acronym: SEC, followed by a three letter word: why? The SEC has been conducting deep drill down sweeps into the practice of fund companies paying out distribution fees disguised as service fees. The question floating around the industry is: why has this become important to the SEC now? Well, to understand the present involves looking at the past, and that requires a review of the SEC’s Rule 12b-1

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Burton Keller
L. Burton Keller was a principal founder of the company in 1985 and currently focuses on strategic initiatives for the company. Mr. Keller also serves as company representative to the DTCC and is an active member of the Bank, Trust and Retirement Advisory Committee of the Investment Company Institute.

Omnibus Transparency to Help Solve One of the Money Market Reform Issues

In the recent Ingites article, “BlackRock: Bring On Gates, Stress Tests for Bond Funds“, Blackrock is suggesting more omnibus transparency to help guard against fixed income market liquidity shortages. This all has to do with the MMR (Money Market Reform) issues the fund industry is currently dealing with. They are suggesting policymakers Read more

Burton Keller
L. Burton Keller was a principal founder of the company in 1985 and currently focuses on strategic initiatives for the company. Mr. Keller also serves as company representative to the DTCC and is an active member of the Bank, Trust and Retirement Advisory Committee of the Investment Company Institute.

Explanation of Industry Issue Around Sales Charge Waivers & Share Class Eligibility

There are two issues the broker dealers are faced with that have caused these fines and rebates to customers as outlined in the article below. Most of the fines/rebates are around B/Ds selling A shares to retirement plans and charitable accounts in which they stated in their prospectus that they would waive those fees. Read more

Delta Data Staff
Our staff writers work with Delta Data executives and industry experts to bring you news, trends and insight on the mutual funds industry, particularly issues, regulation, and technology in regard to fund oversight and distribution. Delta Data provides the back-end solutions that companies use to process billions of dollars of transactions and stay ahead of the change™.

Overview of Distribution in Guise Issue

A recent Ignites article highlighted the imminent enforcement from the SEC on “distribution in guise”. This is a complex topic our clients are faced with. Our current clients are using the insight from our analytics suite coupled with the automated expense allocation execution our Fee Management platform to solve this complex issue. We prepared this overview of the issue to provide insight for our clients on how these issues can be tackled regardless of technical platform and compliance with distribution rules can be obtained in the current complex fee marketplace.  Read more

Whitfield Athey
Whitfield Athey is CEO of Delta Data Software. His role at Delta Data is focused on growth of the product base, satisfaction of clients and scalability of the organization.

Distribution in Guise’ Enforcement Actions in Works: SEC

In case you missed this article in today’s issue of Ignites. Looks like what they examined in the “Distribution in Guise” sweep will  be covered now in regular exams of funds. This should take it down stream to some of the smaller funds as the sweep probably just hit the big fund companies. Read more

Burton Keller
L. Burton Keller was a principal founder of the company in 1985 and currently focuses on strategic initiatives for the company. Mr. Keller also serves as company representative to the DTCC and is an active member of the Bank, Trust and Retirement Advisory Committee of the Investment Company Institute.