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John Hancock Investments reduces expenses across a range of mutual funds

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John Hancock Investments is reducing sales charges for Class A shares on 16 fixed income funds.

This includes the elimination of the front-end sales charges on the John Hancock Floating Rate Income Fund (JFIAX) and the John Hancock Short Duration Credit Opportunities Fund (JMBAX) for investments of USD250,000 or more.  
 
John Hancock Investments is also modifying the CDSC schedule for Class A shares of John Hancock Floating Rate Income Fund and John Hancock Short Duration Credit Opportunities Fund, as described below.
 
In addition, the firm is contractually lowering expenses for nearly all of their funds with Class R6 institutional share classes. 
 
These expense reductions and modifications are effective immediately.
 
"We're pleased to open the New Year by continuing our program of fund expense reductions, this time on nearly our entire fixed-income fund line-up. These latest fee cuts will help put more of our shareholders' investment dollars to work more quickly," says Andrew G Arnott, president and chief executive. "John Hancock Investments is committed to delivering real investment value for our shareholders, because we know the only way we can be successful as asset managers is if our shareholders are successful."
 
For the John Hancock Floating Rate Fund, initial investments between USD250,000 and USD499,999 and between USD500,000 and USD999,999, which had two per cent and 1.5 per cent sales charges respectively, will now have no sales charge. Initial investments of USD1m or more will continue to carry no sales charge. For investments of less than USD100,000 sales charges will drop from three per cent to 2.5 per cent, and for investments between USD100,000 to USD249,999 will go from 2.5 per cent to two per cent.
 
The John Hancock Short Duration Credit Opportunities Fund will see investments between USD250,000 and USD499,999 and between USD500,000 and USD999,999, which had 2.75 per cent and two per cent sales charges respectively, now have no sales charge. Initial investments of USD1m or more continue to carry no sales charge. For investments of less than USD100,000 the sales charge will drop from 4.5 per cent to 2.5 per cent, and for investments of between USD100,000 to USD249,999, the fee will drop from 3.75 per cent to two per cent.
 
Additionally, as of 1 February 2014, for nearly all R6 shares, an institutional share class that includes qualified 401(k) plans, endowments and foundations, among others, the funds' advisor has agreed to contractually waive and/or reimburse all class-specific expenses.  This expense reduction has been in place on a voluntary basis since 1 January 2014.  As a result, fund expenses have decreased on average by eight basis points, and some funds have decreased up to 20 basis points. 
 
In addition to the John Hancock Floating Rate and Short Duration Credit Opportunities funds, 14 other fixed income funds will see charges for initial investments up to USD100,000 decrease from 4.5 per cent to four per cent.  For investments between USD100,000 and USD249,000 sales charges will drop from 3.75 per cent to 3.50 per cent.  Investments between USD250,000 and USD499,999 will now have a sales charge of 2.50 per cent.  Investments between USD500,000 and USD999,999 will continue to have a sales charge of two per cent and investments of USD1m or more will continue to carry no sales charge.
 
The funds with this new sales charge schedule are: John Hancock Bond Fund, John Hancock Core High Yield Fund, John Hancock Emerging Markets Debt Fund, John Hancock Global Income Fund, John Hancock Government Income Fund, John Hancock Focused High Yield Fund, John Hancock Income Fund, John Hancock Investment Grade Bond Fund, John Hancock Strategic Income Opportunities Fund, John Hancock California Tax-Free Income Fund, John Hancock High Yield Municipal Bond Fund, John Hancock Massachusetts Tax-Free Income Fund, John Hancock New York Tax-Free Income Fund, John Hancock Tax-Free Bond Fund.
 
Purchases of Class A shares at net asset value where a front end sales charge is not imposed are subject to a contingent deferred sales charge (CDSC). Effective 3 February, for John Hancock Floating Rate Income Fund and John Hancock Short Duration Credit Opportunities Fund, the CDSC rate imposed on Class A shares will be lowered from one per cent to 0.50 per cent for purchases of USD250,000 or more that are not subject to a front end sales charge and the period of time for which a CDSC may be collected will be extended from 12 months to 18 months from the date of purchase. For the other 14 fixed-income funds, the CDSC remains one per cent for purchases of Class A shares of USD1m or more that were not subject to a front end sales charge and are sold within 12 months from the date of purchase.
 
Moreover, effective 3 February 2014, any exchanges into Class A shares will remain subject to the original CDSC schedule associated with the initial purchase of shares that are being exchanged.  For purposes of determining the holding period for calculating the CDSC, shares will continue to age from their original purchase date. 

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