Fidelity Investments unveiled a restructuring of its product distribution channels yesterday.

The Boston-based firm combined its retail and institutional brokerage operations into a single group, the Personal Investments and Brokerage Group, said a Fidelity spokesman.

J. Gary Burkhead, vice chairman of FMR Corp., Fidelity's parent, will head up the Personal Investments and Brokerage Group, the spokesman said. The move was made to simplify distribution channels. Mr. Burkhead previously ran the retirement area.

The move comes on the heels of Paul Hondros' departure to Philadelphia- based Pilgrim Baxter & Associates. Mr. Hondros had supervised retail operations at Fidelity.

Fidelity already had two business groups covering retirement and intermediaries that distribute Fidelity products: the Fidelity Investments Institutional Retirement Group and the Fidelity Financial Intermediary Services Group.

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