Mother Merrill Hates Funds
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Tuesday, October 15, 2002

Mother Merrill Hates Funds

No one likes the fund industry these days -- not even the analysts. Yesterday, Merrill Lynch analysts placed "sell" ratings on the stocks of some of the leading public fund firms. Let's hope that the call turns out to be a reverse harbinger.

Those hit with the rare recommendation include Franklin Resources, Eaton Vance and Gabelli Asset Management. Merrill had assigned all of those stocks a "neutral" rating prior to the downgrades.

Merrill analysts say that the entire asset management side is in for stormy weather as asset flows become less predictable. Especially hard hit will be firms with a retail focus, according to the analysis.

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