Fund industry trade group the Investment Funds Institute of Canada (IFIC) expressed disappointment with regulators’ decision to ban mutual fund deferred sales charges in early 2020.
The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) said Thursday that they plan to introduce rule changes next year to effectively eliminate deferred sales charges (DSCs) except in Ontario, which is still considering alternatives to an outright ban.
IFIC said that it will “closely review” the regulators’ statements, and the actual policy that follows in 2020. In the meantime, the group reiterated its long-held defence of DSCs.
“The investment funds industry would have preferred a nationally-harmonized approach that preserved payment choices for investors with full fee transparency,” it said in a statement.
A spokesman for Ontario’s Ministry of Finance, which has opposed the CSA’s decision to ban DSCs, cited concerns about access to advice in explaining its decision to deviate from the regulators on this issue.
“The ban on the DSC option imposed by the CSA in the rest of the country will discontinue a payment option for purchasing mutual funds that has enabled Ontario families to save towards retirement and other financial goals,” said ministry spokesman Scott Blodgett in a statement.
“We will consider restrictions on the use of the DSC option aimed at addressing investor protection concerns while allowing for the continuation of a viable investment option for families,” he said.
In a notice Thursday, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) said it’s considering a number of curbs on DSCs, such as restricting sales to seniors, prohibiting the use of leverage in DSC sales, and setting limits on redemption fee schedules, among other possible restrictions.