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Friday, October 24, 2008

Fink Pens a History Book on Mutual Funds

News summary by MFWire's editors

Ex-ICI president Matthew Fink has a book out on the history of the mutual fund industry. The Rise of Mutual Funds: An Insider's View, published by Oxford University Press, documents the developments in the industry, with those happening after 1970 reflecting Fink's firsthand experience.

Fink spent 34 years at the ICI before retiring in 2004. He was the trade group's president for 13 years.
Press Release

NEW YORK, Oct 24, 2008 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- A new book written by Matthew P. Fink, former President of the Investment Company Institute (ICI), the national association of the mutual fund industry, describes specific events that have produced a long history of success for the mutual fund industry. The book is the first that pulls together the many strands of mutual funds' unique history.

The book, entitled The Rise of Mutual Funds: An Insider's View, differs from most industry histories because much of it is a personal narrative. Mr. Fink's discussion of developments since 1970 reflects firsthand experience. In 1940 few Americans had heard of mutual funds. Today U.S. mutual funds are the largest financial industry in the world, with more than 88 million shareholders and $11 trillion in assets. The Rise of Mutual Funds describes the developments that have produced mutual funds' long history of success -- and the actions taken by Congress decades ago to protect mutual funds and their shareholders.

Mr. Fink spent his career representing the mutual fund industry before Congress, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and other federal and state government agencies. The book's selection of key events stresses the importance of developments in which Mr. Fink was personally involved.

The release of this book is newsworthy today with the economy facing volatility not seen since the Great Depression. At a time when the U.S. financial system is threatened with collapse, Matt Fink describes how sensible regulation helped make mutual funds the world's largest financial industry: -- Mutual funds' success is due to controls Congress imposed decades ago
-- Funds are subject to strict limits on leveraging
-- Funds are required to diversify their portfolios
-- Funds are governed against managers dumping securities into their funds
-- Funds are required to provide full disclosure to investors.

The current crisis stems in large measure from the failure to impose similar controls on mortgage-backed pools and other asset-backed arrangements.

Industry leaders have endorsed the book and the author.

"Matt Fink was an active participant in the rise of the U.S. mutual fund industry from cottage industry to global force. His historical perspectives and real-time commentary make this book a must read for people interested in the past, present, and future of this vital industry." -- Jack Brennan, Chairman, Vanguard

"Matthew Fink has written an extraordinarily well-informed 'insider's view' of the recent history of the mutual fund industry. Building on his expertise as part president of the Investment Company Institute and his participation in virtually every relevant congressional or SEC debate, Fink provides a comprehensive and learned account of why mutual funds have grown to become this country's most distinctive and most widely-held investment vehicle." -- Joel Seligman, President, University of Rochester

THE RISE OF MUTUAL FUNDS: AN INSIDER'S VIEW was published by Oxford University Press on October 24, 2008 ($34.95 / 320 pages / ISBN13: 978-0-19-533645-0). SOURCE Oxford University Press  

Edited by: Armie Margaret Lee

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