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Washington

SEC concludes Wellington Management investigation – sources

The Securities and Exchange Commission concluded its investigation into Wellington Management after first notifying the firm last year it was probing its private company investment activities.

Wellington has notified at least two of its institutional clients — the $386 million Joint Retirement Investment Board for Fairfield, Conn., and the $1.3 billion Tulare County Employees Retirement Association — that the SEC has closed its investigation.

The SEC alerted Wellington it was "opening an investigation into some aspects of (its) private company investment activities," a Wellington client letter, dated May 17, 2017, stated. "The investigation appears to be focused on private equity investments and associated valuation practices," the letter, published by TCERA, said.

David Kehler, the retirement administrator for TCERA, said in a phone interview: "Our understanding is that it has been closed, as least as it pertains to the investment we have with them, so we are not pursuing it further."

Wellington managed a $21.4 million commodities strategy for TCERA, as of June 30, investor documents show.

Additionally, Robert Mayer, chief fiscal officer for the town of Fairfield, said in a phone call that the retirement board received word from Wellington on Oct. 24 that the SEC investigation was closed. The board has $17 million invested in Wellington's hedge fund Archipelago Partners, Mr. Mayer said.

Officials at the SEC and Wellington declined to comment on the matter.