Merrill Lynch Investment management (MLIM) is to make a further 26 funds from two offshore ranges av...
Merrill Lynch Investment management (MLIM) is to make a further 26 funds from two offshore ranges available to the UK market as part of a shake-up of its fund offerings.
The funds concerned comprise the Merrill Lynch Equity/ Convertible Series and the Merrill Lynch Global Currency Bond Series, Luxembourg-based open ended investment companies, with assets being run from Princeton in the US.
These funds represent the bulk of Merrill Lynch's offshore offering, as opposed to the former Mercury Asset Management, MST branded funds, which are also run from Luxembourg in a Sicav format. MLIM plans to bring the MST range and the Merrill Lynch ranges together under a single administration and client servicing platform, so offshore qualified intermediaries can view the entire Merrills offshore range in one place.
Elizabeth Corley, head of European, Middle Eastern and African retail at MLIM, said: 'We will be able to offer UK investors much more choice by bringing these ranges together under one umbrella. The MLIM ranges tend to have more of a value style, while the MST range is more growth orientated. There is very little crossover between the two ranges, and we feel they complement each other well. Subject to regulatory and board approval, we will have one of the most comprehensive fund ranges in the market.'
The three Sicavs currently have different pricing structures but MLIM is looking to harmonise these by the time the platform is launched towards the middle of next year.
Other changes include renaming the Mercury Offshore Trust (MOST) fund range under the Merrill Lynch brand. No firm date has been specified yet for the change, although Corley was able to confirm that it would take place at some point next year, subject to regulatory and board approval.
She also indicated that the company plans to develop its unit trust range.
'We are looking to fill one or two gaps in our range. There could be room for a couple more funds which carry a bit more risk, for example but we're looking at a number of ideas,' said Corley.
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