For mutual funds, the point at which the amount invested reduces the sales charge is called the "breakpoint." Each mutual fund may have several breakpoints; the larger the investment, the greater the discount. Note that the actual reduction in the sales charge is known as the "breakpoint discount". Also, the term "breakpointing" is sometimes used to refer to the offering of breakpoint discounts. The practice of soliciting mutual fund purchases just below the breakpoint (to earn more commissions) is considered unethical and in violation of NASD rules. See: right of accumulation.
Copyright © 2011 Campbell R. Harvey, Professor of Finance, Fuqua School of Business at Duke University