Fellow committee member Susan Wyderko, who runs an association for independent mutual fund directors, backed the electronic delivery proposal.

“The money for this comes from the shareholders’ pockets and a lot of shareholders just don’t read this stuff,” she said. “They put it in the trash.”

As the debate rages on, some who have studied financial disclosure say the electronic delivery fight is overshadowing a more important problem -- few people understand what they are reading anyway. All sides may be missing the forest for the trees, so to speak.

“The paper costs are second order to the bigger issue,” said Michael Barr, a former Treasury Department official who is a professor at University of Michigan Law School. “How do we make these disclosures easier for human beings?”

This story was provided by Bloomberg News.

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