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ICI Criticizes Foreign Custody Proposal

The Investment Company Institute of Washington, D.C., has suggested changes in an SEC rule proposal governing how mutual funds oversee their securities held in foreign countries. The ICI said it was troubled by language in the proposed amendment to rule 17f-5 of the Investment Company Act and a proposed new rule 17f-7. Together, the rule proposals, which require a fund's global custodian to monitor the risk of using sub-custodians in foreign countries under certain circumstances, could effectively prohibit funds from investing in some countries, the ICI said. The SEC should adopt language in the rule making it clear that funds could use a foreign sub-custodian, despite risks associated with the firm, the ICI said in a letter dated July 15 to the SEC.