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December 1, 2004

An End to the Wine and Roses

By Staff Reports

A list of services considered off-limits in soft-dollar arrangements has been spelled out by the Financial Services Authority in the U.K. as part of a supplementary policy statement. The list includes travel, accommodation or entertainment costs; most custody services; subscriptions for publications; dedicated telephone lines and services related to the valuation or performance measurement of portfolios. Some execution costs can be covered by soft dollars, the FSA said. But they must be "demonstrably linked to the arranging and conclusion of a specific transaction; and arise between the point at which the fund manager makes an investment decision and the point at which the transaction is concluded."