July 19, 2007
I am writing to express my serious concerns about the SEC's ongoing review of Rule 12b-1.
Although it may sound investor-friendly to review this fee structure, I feel that the law of unintended consequences will pop up here, to the detriment of investors, if the SEC changes the current, long-time structure.
I have been an independent financial advisor for about 20 years; I explain to clients that the mutual funds pay me "trail commissions" to service their accounts and I therefore do not need to charge my client a fee based on their portfolio value. 12b-1 fees provide a tax efficient means to support the continuing service which these clients require for successful investing.
If the SEC changes the 12b-1 fee structure, I will have to either start charging all my clients portfolio management fees, which they have never paid, or tell clients that I can no longer be their advisor. Imagine the position this puts my clients in. Disturbed and disrupted.
Please leave the 12b-1 fee structure as it is.
(On another subject: I believe SEC review of variable annuity sales in retirement accounts is needed - I wonder why variable annuities are permitted to hold retirement accounts at all.)
Ms. Sandra Pohutsky