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Mutual Fund Brokerage Commissions

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  • Livingston, Miles
  • O'Neal, Edward S

Abstract

The brokerage commissions paid for portfolio transactions by a large sample of equity mutual funds are investigated. Median brokerage commissions measured as a percentage of net assets are 21 basis points per year with a standard deviation of 27 basis points. The commission levels are negatively correlated with fund size and positively correlated with fund turnover and expense ratio. The average brokerage commission measured as a percentage of assets traded exceeds the typical execution-only commissions for large institutional traders. This finding is consistent with many mutual fund brokerage commissions including payments for research, so-called soft dollar payments. Funds' expense ratios are positively correlated with commissions per trade, inconsistent with the idea that mutual fund managers who pay soft dollars for research have a corresponding reduction in management fees.

Suggested Citation

  • Livingston, Miles & O'Neal, Edward S, 1996. "Mutual Fund Brokerage Commissions," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association;Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 19(2), pages 273-292, Summer.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jfnres:v:19:y:1996:i:2:p:273-92
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Sundaram, Sridhar & Rangan, Nanda & Davidson, Wallace III, 1992. "The market valuation effects of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 16(6), pages 1097-1122, December.
    2. John J. Binder, 1985. "Measuring the Effects of Regulation with Stock Price Data," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 16(2), pages 167-183, Summer.
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    4. Larry D. Wall, 2010. "Too-big-to-fail after FDICIA," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    5. James, Christopher, 1983. "An analysis of intra-industry differences in the effect of regulation : The case of deposit rate ceilings," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 417-432, September.
    6. Allen, Paul R & Wilhelm, William J, 1988. "The Impact of the 1980 Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act on Market Value and Risk: Evidence from the Capital Markets," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 20(3), pages 364-380, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Estelle James & Gary Ferrier & James H. Smalhout & Dimitri Vittas, 2000. "Mutual Funds and Institutional Investments: What Is the Most Efficient Way to Set Up Individual Accounts in a Social Security System?," NBER Chapters,in: Administrative Aspects of Investment-Based Social Security Reform, pages 77-136 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Anolli, Mario & Del Giudice, Alfonso, 2008. "Italian Open End Mutual Fund Costs," MPRA Paper 8111, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Miles Livingston & Edward S. O'Neal, 1998. "The Cost Of Mutual Fund Distribution Fees," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association;Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 21(2), pages 205-218, June.
    4. Jerry Parwada & Robert Faff, 2005. "Pension Plan Investment Management Mandates: An Empirical Analysis of Manager Selection," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 27(1), pages 77-98, February.
    5. Marcin Kacperczyk & Clemens Sialm & Lu Zheng, 2008. "Unobserved Actions of Mutual Funds," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(6), pages 2379-2416, November.
    6. Yaman Ö. Erzurumlu & Vladimir Kotomin, 2016. "Mutual Funds’ Soft Dollar Arrangements: Determinants, Impact on Shareholder Wealth, and Relation to Governance," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 50(1), pages 95-119, August.
    7. Nicolaj Siggelkow, 1999. "Expense Shifting: An Empirical Study of Agency Costs in the Mutual Fund Industry," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 99-09, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
    8. Edelen, Roger M. & Evans, Richard B. & Kadlec, Gregory B., 2012. "Disclosure and agency conflict: Evidence from mutual fund commission bundling," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(2), pages 308-326.
    9. Prather, Laurie & Bertin, William J. & Henker, Thomas, 2004. "Mutual fund characteristics, managerial attributes, and fund performance," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 305-326.
    10. Monika K. Rabarison, 2016. "New insights into mutual fund brokerage commissions," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer;Academy of Economics and Finance, vol. 40(3), pages 492-513, July.

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