FINRA Fines Merrill Lynch $8 Million; Over $89 Million Repaid to Retirement Accounts and Charities Overcharged for Mutual Funds
Read the FINRA Press release: Merrill Fined 8 Million, Read Full Press Release
Do you Own Mutual Funds? Where you over charged?
Mutual funds charge fees and expense which are paid by investors. But the amount investors are charged varies depending on the fund class:
While they carry an initial sales charge, Class A shares typically have lower expenses than Class B or Class C shares.
Class B shares have a back-end load – that means you pay a commission when you redeem your shares. And Class B shares typically have higher 12b-1 fees (this is an annual fee for shareholder services and distribution expenses).
Class C shares also charge 12b-1 fees and a back-end load, though often lower than Class B shares. However, Class C shares can cost investors more in the long run: unlike Class B shares, they cannot be converted to Class A to achieve a lower expense ratio.
When considering mutual fund classes, remember that even a little increase in fees can translate into big decreases in your return over time.