March 7, 2004
1 The proposed SEC rules 15c2-2 and 15c2-3 are too long to read and thoroughly understand - I request an extension of the 60 day review period to at least 120 days for sufficient time to assess and comment on its various aspects.
2 The proposed elimination of 12b-1 fees paid to brokers as service fees would have a substantial impact on my and other honest brokers livlihoods, and would provide no financial benefit to clients who want a professional to service their accounts. In fact, it could either degrade
the service we can afford to provide them, or it may give
some brokers subliminal incentive to move clients assets for a new commission.
The industry, and in particular the critics of the industry, has been moving more to a fee-based instead
of a commission-based structure. For many of us, the 0.25 percent 12b-1 fees we receive are for a low-cost fee-based service after selling A shares often at seriouly discounted commissions. In my particular case, 95+ percent of my sales are A shares often in amounts over 250,000, and almost always in amounts over 100,000. Therefore, I do not receive a big up-front commission, and view a 0.25
percent service fee plus the front load to be a very economical option for my clients.
I make about 50,000 per year from these fees on my substantial book of business. This represents 1/3 to 1/2 of my income, and I would be financially ruined if the government were to take this away from me. I worked hard
to build this book of business with honesty and integrity, and dont think it would be right for the government to ruin me.
-These fees have always been disclosed in the
prospectuses for the funds I sell
-at 0.25 percent for A shares these fees are
extremely low compared to what a client might
pay in a wrap program ie. 1+ percent
- at 1 percent for B and C shares, these fees are
comparable to a wrap program.
- why shouldnt brokers be paid to service their
books of business??
Anthony R. Luzzi