Subject: File No. S7-08-04

February 16, 2004

On TV today I saw a woman who works in your agency say that you are anxious to know what the public wants from you. Well, we want to have as much information as possible about what is being done with our hard-earned dollars.
Please check and see how much Americans spend on information sources of all kinds.
This fact is so obvious, I find it hard to believe you even have to ask us if we want to know things like how much of our investment is going into commissions and others fees when we invest.
She was talking about Mutual Funds but in addition to that, when Brokerage Houses up or downgrade a stock, we should be told how many shares they hold in that company. I have observed that the same brokerage will downgrade a stock and then some weeks later upgrade it or vice-versa in a manner not in line with my research on the company.
Are there any statistics on how much the American public spends on information sources regarding their investments?
This would be financial publications, websites, tv and radio shows in addition to the financial sections in most daily newspapers throughout the country.
I am gratified to see members of the Securities and Exchange Commission appearing on tv and in the media but I hope a lack of response on the publics part will not be construed by you to mean a lack of interest but rather due to the fact that folks are so busy making a living and raising families that they find it necessary to entrust these institutions over which you have governance to handle their savings in an honest and fair manner.
Thanks for your kind attention.
Joan Schall