Measuring money... faster, cheaper, cleaner

The Boston Globe writes "Fidelity to tell money market fund value daily". It says, "Fidelity Investments will start disclosing the real value of its money market mutual fund shares each day, following a move by three New York firms earlier in the week, as the largest players in the $2.5 trillion market try to stave off tighter regulations. Boston-based Fidelity, the nation's largest money market fund manager with $430 billion under its watch, Friday joined Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co., and BlackRock Inc. in announcing plans to disclose valuations daily rather than monthly. By Friday afternoon, Charles Schwab & Co., a big Fidelity competitor, followed suit. Fidelity has vigorously fought efforts to increase regulation of money market funds led by former Securities and Exchange Commission chief Mary Schapiro. The financial crisis prompted fears of a "run" on these funds by anxious investors trying to cash out. The move to be more transparent is the latest effort to hold off regulators." The Globe adds, "It was surprising to see several big institutions all make similar announcements about disclosure this week, said Peter Crane, president of Crane Data in Westborough, which tracks money markets." They quote Crane, "It's a sign that funds are getting nervous about serious regulation, and a sign that the campaign that regulators have been on is scaring some investors." The piece adds, "For investors, little will change. They will still buy and sell money market funds for $1 a share. But the precise market value of the investments in the funds will be tallied and disclosed on Fidelity’s website each day, giving investors a more up to date financial view of their holdings."

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