UBS paying $677K to Indiana over ISTA trust fund investments

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UBS Financial Services has agreed to pay Indiana regulators $677,000 to settle a claim over investments by a teachers union health care trust.

UBS agreed Thursday to pay a $450,000 fine and $227,000 in costs to the Indiana Securities Division to settle the claim stemming from $16.2 million that the Indiana State Teachers Association Insurance Trust invested in 13 private equity funds from 2004 to 2009.

UBS didn't admit or deny the claim. Spokeswoman Karina Byrne said the company cooperated fully with the investigation.

The Securities Division is suing ISTA and the National Education Association over $23 million the division says is owed to 21 Indiana school districts by the trust. The NEA took over ISTA in May 2009, after the Indiana Department of Insurance cracked down on the ISTA Insurance trust following an investigation showing that  the value of the trust’s investments had plunged 55 percent in the previous 20 months, leaving it $67 million short of its liabilities.

Last October, the Securities Division filed an administrative complaint against broker David Karandos, accusing him of unethical, dishonest and deceptive practices while advising the ISTA Insurance Trust.

An ISTA spokesman said it had no comment on the settlement.

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