Merrill Outperforming the Legal Market

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With the “Henry Blodget made me do it” defense unable to sway the judge, Merrill Lynch “won” approval of a $40mm settlement over lawsuits claiming that Merrill provided misleading research about companies and failed to disclose mutual fund investments in IB clients. This continues a proud Merrill tradition of lawsuits over falsified or misleading research, mostly dating from 2002 and 2003. In February 2006, Merrill settled another pool of pending and appealed suits for $164mm.
The most recent awarded settlement of $40mm is only 6% of the total claim in damages sought and the judge did dismiss many of the investors’ outstanding legal claims, which Merrill analysts have not surprisingly been extremely optimistic about. They have labeled Merrill’s performance in this lawsuit a “Market Outperform” and rate current research and Merrill products a “Strong Buy.”
Merrill Wins Approval of $40 Million Investor Accord – [Bloomberg]

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