Merrill Lynch (MER) Falls On A Hand Grenade

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Merrill Lynch (MER) turned in a truly aweful quarter. The financial company reported a net loss from continuing operations for the first quarter of 2008 of $1.97 billion, or $2.20 per diluted share, compared to net earnings from continuing operations of $2.03 billion, or $2.12 per diluted share for the first quarter of 2007.

First quarter 2008 net revenues were $2.9 billion, down 69% from the prior-year period.

Merrill wrote down $1.5 billion related to troubled debt instruments and took a $3 billion adjustment related to protection on certain kinds of debt

Douglas A. McIntyre