The Securities and Exchange Commission settled charges against 79 investment advisers, with the latter agreeing to return more than $125 million to clients.
Most of the funds are going to retail investors.
The investment advisers self-reported their violations of the Advisers Act, including cases where they did not disclose conflicts of interest and failed to implement reasonably designed policies and procedures related to mutual fund share classes. Specifically, the SEC found that investment advisers sold higher-cost mutual funds to clients when lower-cost options were available, while benefiting from the fees from the higher-cost funds.
"Consistent with the terms of the initiative, the commission has agreed not to impose penalties against the investment advisers," the SEC said. The settlements stem from an SEC initiative announced in February to promptly correct ongoing harm in mutual fund share sales.