Merrill Lynch's diversified portfolios line of products has topped $10 billion in assets. The company is also adding four outside managers to the mutual fund version of the product, creating Funds Diversified Portfolios (FDP) - Multi-Firm.

The mutual fund version, launched in May 2004, is intended to bring the institutional portfolio management and rebalancing of diversified portfolios to less well-heeled investors, with an investment minimum of $15,000.

The new multi-firm product offers four different portfolio objectives that use funds from Franklin Templeton Investments, MFS Investment Management, Marisco Capital Management and Van Kampen Investments.

"The diversified portfolios were designed to automate the wealth management process for financial advisers, allowing them to deliver a high level of service to clients across market segments," said Jerry Miller, chief operating officer of MLIM Global Proprietary.

"Our commitment to continuous innovation and an ongoing dialogue with financial advisers and clients make the opportunities for the diversified platform limitless," Miller continued.

The first diversified portfolio was Consults Diversified Portfolios (CDP), which Global Private Client launched in April 2002. CDP allocates assets among different separately managed accounts and has grown to include investment options from Merrill Lynch Investment Managers and outside managers.

That product was followed in December 2003 by Wealth Diversified Portfolios (WDP), which cater to high-net-worth investors and offer personal portfolio managers. FDP uses a basket of mutual funds to give clients diversification and asset allocation.

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