WASHINGTON (AP) ¿ Investment adviser Value Line Inc., its CEO and its former compliance chief have agreed to pay about $45 million to settle regulators' allegations the firm charged more than $24 million in bogus commissions on mutual fund trades.
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced the settlement with Value Line, a firm that is well known in financial circles for its analytical publications and that also manages mutual funds. New York-based Value Line, chief executive Jean Buttner and former chief compliance officer David Henigson didn't admit or deny the SEC's charges in agreeing to the accord.
Value Line is paying a $10 million civil fine and about $24.2 million in restitution plus $9.5 million in interest. Buttner and Henigson are paying civil fines of $1 million and $250,000, respectively. The two also were barred from working for any brokerage firm or investment adviser or as officers or directors of any public company.
The SEC alleged that from 1986 to November 2004, Value Line channeled a portion of the mutual fund trades to its brokerage business, Value Line Securities Inc., in a so-called "commission recapture program."