Running the Bulls

Throughout its 41-year history, Merrill Lynch & Co. has tried to bring Wall Street to Main Street. By any measure, America's most bullish brokerage house has succeeded. From Bellingham, Wash., to Bradenton, Fla., 75% of all Americans live within 25 miles of one of Merrill Lynch's 476 offices. As a result, the company is bigger than its three closest publicly held competitors—Shearson Loeb Rhoades, E.F. Hutton and Dean Witter Reynolds—put together.

From this position of overwhelming national strength, Merrill Lynch has helped change the ways that Americans spend, save and invest their money....

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