Times have been tough for Morgan Stanley on the mutual funds front lately - with claims of staff engaging in illegal mutual funds sales contests, allegedly touting funds paying higher commissions and the former manager of one of the firm's Boston offices last week charged with securities fraud and dishonest conduct by state regulators. But at least Morgan Stanley has done something about it and has responded quickly.
In November the firm announced that it had entered into settlements with the Securities and Exchange Commission and NASD regarding certain mutual funds sales practices. The firm agreed to pay $50m and amended its procedures. Morgan Stanley chairman and CEO Philip Purcell said: 'I regret that some of our sales and disclosure practices have been found inadequate.....Our clients must have confidence in their dealings with Morgan Stanley and our financial advisers'. With this in mind, the firm has posted an investor 'bill of rights' on its website, www.morganstanley.com, and is hanging its colors to the mast, there for all to see.