The nearly $1 billion FleetBoston agreed to pay last week to acquire the asset management units of Liberty Financial, appears to be a good deal, but the real value of the acquisition will depend on how the two companies merge, according to industry observers.

There is a good chance that Liberty Financial of Boston would have been able to command a better price a year ago, but market conditions have diminished assets and may have damaged otherwise attractive acquisition targets, according to Anthony Nuland, a partner in the Washington D.C. office of Seward & Kissel of New York.

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