The Regulation of Fee Structures in Mutual Funds: A Theoretical Analysis
51 Pages Posted: 11 Nov 2008
Date Written: February 1998
Existing regulations require fee structures used to compensate advisers in the mutual fund industry to be the "fulcrum" variety, decreasing for underperforming a given index in the same way in which they increase for outperforming it. In this paper, we offer a new model for analysing the mutual fund industry, and use this model to examine the impact of restricting the fee structures that may be employed. We find little justification for existing regulations. Indeed, we find that "incentive fees" in which the advisor receives a flat fee plus a bonus for exceeding a benchmark index provide Pareto-dominant outcomes with a lower level of equilibrium volatility.
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