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Fidelity to Drop Charge on Industry Stock Funds

September 20, 2003|From Bloomberg News

Fidelity Investments, the biggest U.S. mutual fund company, will eliminate a 3% sales charge on purchases of its 42 stock funds that focus on specific industries.

The funds, known as Select Portfolios, "have proven to be effective vehicles through which investors can gain exposure to particular market sectors or industries," and investors can buy them "without an upfront sales charge," David Giunta, a senior vice president, said in a statement Friday.

The move by Boston-based Fidelity follows its decision in June to do away with a similar fee assessed on purchases of its flagship Magellan Fund and four other stock funds.

Fidelity has been lifting sales charges and introducing new funds to reverse two years of redemptions from stock funds. The three-year bear market has trimmed Fidelity's assets by 11% to $906 billion. The Select Portfolios have $18.3 billion in assets.

The industry-specific funds, such as the $181-million Fidelity Select Energy Portfolio, will still charge a 0.75% redemption fee on shares held less than 30 days, Fidelity said. The upfront fees will be dropped next week.

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