The Employee Benefit Security Administration is investigating mutual funds, pooled investment vehicles and plan service providers to determine if there have been any violations of federal pension law related to the mutual fund scandal. The review, which began when the scandal broke last fall, covers sample funds of different sizes and from different parts of the country, said Assistant Labor Secretary Ann Combs in an interview. Violations could include accepting improper payments for directing investments of pension funds, and using pension assets to facilitate late trading. "We are looking at many issues to make sure participants have not been disadvantaged," she said.
The Labor Department is coordinating its investigation with the SEC and other federal agencies, but on a separate track, Ms. Combs said. She declined to say when the review would be completed, saying only, "We will take it where it leads us."