SEC Announces $31.5 Million Fair Fund Distribution to Investors Injured by Undisclosed Market Timing in MFS Funds
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Washington, D.C., Nov. 20, 2007 - The Securities and Exchange Commission today distributed $31.5 million in Fair Funds to more than 150,000 investors who were harmed by undisclosed mutual fund market timing in the Massachusetts Financial Services Company (MFS) funds between 1999 and 2003.
The distribution is the first in a series of disbursements from the Fair Fund that will return approximately $306 million to affected MFS account holders. The Fair Fund resulted from a Commission enforcement action charging unlawful conduct by Massachusetts Financial Services Company and two of its former officers by allowing widespread market timing trading in certain MFS mutual funds contrary to those funds' public disclosures.
The Commission has returned more than $3.2 billion to injured investors through Fair Fund distributions since the passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in 2002.
"We are very pleased to begin distributing the MFS Fair Fund to investors injured by past market timing misconduct," said David Bergers, Director of the SEC's Boston Regional Office. "This Fair Fund and others like it permit the Commission to continue helping investors injured by securities law violators."
In 2004, the Commission brought and settled public administrative and cease-and-desist proceedings against MFS, its chief executive officer John W. Ballen, and its president and chief equity officer Kevin R. Parke. Each consented to a Commission Order charging anti-fraud violations without admitting or denying the Commission's findings. Among other things, the Commission ordered MFS to pay $175 million in disgorgement and $50 million in penalties for distribution through a Fair Fund.
Investors can obtain additional information about the distribution process, including a copy of the Distribution Plan, by visiting http://www.Rust-MFSSettlement.com or by calling the Administrator of the Distribution Plan at 1-800-760-4955.
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For more information, contact:
David P. Bergers, Regional Director
John T. Dugan, Associate Regional Director
LeeAnn G. Gaunt, Assistant Regional Director
SEC's Boston Regional Office
Modified Order Approving the Distribution Plan:
Order Instituting Proceedings Against MFS:
Additional Documents and Background: