The Securities and Exchange Commission will drop its fight against a court decision putting more restrictions on Wall Street brokers who oversee $300 billion in clients' cash.

Earlier this spring, a federal appeals court ruled that the SEC had overstepped its authority in updating rules governing the brokers, siding with the Financial Planning Association, which sued the SEC over its original 1999 proposal -- which was never actually adopted. The association argued that the rule, which would have allowed brokers to offer some fee-based services without abiding by tougher customer-protection requirements other investment advisors have to follow, violated distinctions Congress intended to apply to brokers and investment advisers.

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