Banc of America Securities-Merrill Lynch Research Hires Ethan Harris as Head of North America Economics and David Bianco as Head of U.S. Equity Strategy; Appoints Michael Hartnett Chairman of the Research Investment Committee and Chief Global Equity Strategist


    NEW YORK, June 1 /CNW/ -- Banc of America Securities-Merrill Lynch
Research today announced the hire of Ethan Harris as head of North America
Economics and David Bianco as head of U.S. Equity Strategy.

    (Logo: )

    Harris will join from Barclays, formerly Lehman Brothers, where he was
the chief U.S. Economist since 2003. Harris is highly recognized in his field
and most recently ranked No.1 in the 2008 Wall Street Journal Economic
Forecasting survey. He has also been named to the Institutional Investor
All-America Fixed-Income Research Team for the past six years, placing No.2 in
2007. Harris will be responsible for formulating and communicating the North
America economic outlook and the Fed interest rate call, and will work in
partnership with the Rates Strategy Research team on longer term yield curve
forecasts. Harris will start in September.

    Prior to joining Lehman in 1996, Harris worked at the Federal Reserve
Bank of New York for nine years. Previously, he worked for several years as an
international economist at J.P. Morgan. He is also the author of Ben
Bernanke's Fed: The Federal Reserve After Greenspan. He holds a Ph.D. in
Economics from Columbia University, where he was a University Fellow.

    Bianco will join from UBS where he most recently served as chief U.S.
Equity Portfolio Strategist and head of U.S. Valuation and Accounting
Research. Bianco is well known for his analytical rigor and is a highly ranked
Institutional Investor analyst in both U.S. Portfolio Strategy and Accounting
and Tax Policy. Bianco's key responsibilities will include the delivery of
U.S. Equity Strategy recommendations, including sector, industry, and size and
style, forecasting the S&P500 earnings outlook and authoring thematic
research. Bianco will start in July.

    Prior to joining UBS in 2002, Bianco worked at Deutsche Bank as chief
U.S. Quantitative Strategist and at Credit Suisse First Boston as a senior
equity analyst. Bianco has also served on the FASB's Financial Accounting
Standards Advisory Council since 2005. He is a graduate of The Wharton School,
at the University of Pennsylvania, where he earned a BS in Economics. He is
also a CFA charterholder.

    Harris and Bianco will be based in New York and will report to Adam
Quinton, head of Banc of America Securities-Merrill Lynch Global Macro

    Banc of America Securities-Merrill Lynch Research also announced
strategic leadership changes in the structure of the Global Macro group
designed to produce high quality and detailed U.S. and global equity
allocation strategies. These include the appointment of Michael Hartnett as
chairman of the Research Investment Committee (RIC), which is responsible for
identifying the best investment ideas across the Global Research platform and
will author the RIC Report. In this role Hartnett will be supported by Joe
Zidle, Global Wealth Management Strategist.  Hartnett was also named chief
Global Equity Strategist, initially tasked with developing a global equity
allocation effort working with senior regional equity strategists across the

    "I am very pleased to have individuals of Ethan and David's caliber join
our Research team and I would like to thank Michael for agreeing to take on
these additional responsibilities," said Quinton. "All three professionals
bring extensive knowledge of the markets and economy and will instill the
appropriate levels of investment discipline, intellectual drive and client
focus necessary to ensure we create innovative investment ideas that meet the
desire of both individual and institutional clients to diversify their
portfolios and invest locally or globally."

    The goal of Banc of America Securities-Merrill Lynch Research is to be
the premier global research franchise, providing clients with exceptional
service, value-added investment insights and alpha-generating investment
recommendations. Since January 2009, Banc of America Securities-Merrill Lynch
Global Research has hired more than 35 analysts globally. The Research team
provides recommendations on nearly 3,000 equity securities and 850 corporate
bond issuers. The group also provides economic forecasts for approximately 60
countries and recommendations on 40 currencies.

    Bank of America

    Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions,
serving individual consumers, small- and middle-market businesses and large
corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and
other financial and risk management products and services. The company
provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 55
million consumer and small business relationships with more than 6,100 retail
banking offices, more than 18,500 ATMs and award-winning online banking with
nearly 30 million active users.

    Bank of America is among the world's leading wealth management companies
and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across
a broad range of asset classes serving corporations, governments, institutions
and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading
support to more than 4 million small business owners through a suite of
innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves
clients in more than 150 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE:  
BAC) is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and is listed on the
New York Stock Exchange.

    "Bank of America Merrill Lynch" is the marketing name for the global
banking and global markets businesses of Bank of America Corporation. Lending,
derivatives, and other commercial banking activities are performed by banking
affiliates of Bank of America Corporation, including Bank of America, N.A.,
member FDIC. Securities, financial advisory, and other investment banking
activities are performed by investment banking affiliates of Bank of America
Corporation ("Investment Banking Affiliates"), including Banc of America
Securities LLC, and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated, which
are both registered broker-dealers and members of FINRA and SIPC. Investment
products offered by Investment Banking Affiliates: Are Not FDIC Insured (*) May
Lose Value (*) Are Not Bank Guaranteed.


For further information:

For further information: Susan McCabe Walley, Bank of America,
+1-212-449-0389 Web Site:

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