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BOSTON, April 27, 2006 - Fidelity Investments today announced that for the third consecutive year its Stock Plan Services business received an unqualified SAS 70 Type II Report under the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants' (AICPA) internationally recognized auditing standard known as SAS 70 (Statement of Auditing Standards (SAS) No. 70). The SAS 70 Type II examination is performed annually by independent auditors and tests the effectiveness of a company's internal controls, providing an independent confirmation of a service provider's control environment and capabilities.
Fidelity's recent receipt of an unqualified SAS 70 Type II Report gives plan sponsors and their independent auditors assurance of the effectiveness of Fidelity's stock plan services control environment, eliminating the need for plan sponsors to incur the expense of testing these controls themselves.
"In the era of Sarbanes-Oxley, providing equity-based compensation plans has become an increasingly demanding and complex task," said Don Holborn, executive vice president of Fidelity's Stock Plan Services business. "Our ability to meet the demanding standards required for receipt of an unqualified SAS 70 Type II Report for the third straight year reaffirms Fidelity's ability to cost-effectively manage and mitigate the complexity and compliance and recordkeeping risks associated with stocks plans for more than 150 plan sponsor clients worldwide."
This is the third consecutive year that Fidelity's Stock Plan Services business has earned the SAS 70 Type II Report. Conducted by independent auditors, the report evaluates and tests Fidelity's internal service controls, including the control environment risk assessment, control activities, information and communication, and monitoring. The annual examination period ended October 31, 2005, and covered stock option and employee stock purchase plans; restricted stock awards, including performance-based grants; international operations; stock appreciation rights and Financial Accounting Standards (FAS) rule 123 compliance.
About Fidelity Stock Plan Services
Fidelity Stock Plan Services provides full-plan administration and record keeping services to U.S.-based global enterprises that offer equity compensation plans. As of March 31, 2006, the group serviced approximately 159 plan sponsor clients representing 367 different plans and approximately one million plan participants.
About Fidelity Investments
Fidelity Investments is one of the world's largest providers of financial services, with custodied assets of $2.6 trillion, including managed assets of $1.2 trillion as of March 31, 2006. Fidelity offers investment management, retirement planning, brokerage, and human resources and benefits outsourcing services to more than 21 million individuals and institutions as well as through 5,500 financial intermediaries. The firm is the largest mutual fund company in the United States, the No. 1 provider of workplace retirement savings plans, one of the largest mutual fund supermarkets and a leading online brokerage firm. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit www.fidelity.com.