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SEC, NASD Collaborate on Fee Disclosure Guidelines

The Securities and Exchange Commission and the NASD are said to be cooperating on new fee disclosure rules to make sure investors are fully aware of all mutual fund fees, including obscure fees sometimes hidden in prospectuses. Although the SEC has spent months hammering out new regulations requiring fund companies to highlight fees, the Commission is now questioning whether average shareholders have the means to understand the new data and may require fund distributors to collect investors' signatures on new point-of-sale forms that fully disclose commissions. The average investor has a basic grasp of annual investment management fees, but other broker compensation schemes and trading costs remain less transparent, regulators said.