NEW YORK - Commerzbank AG's sale of Montgomery Asset Management LLC to Wells Fargo & Co. will effectively mean the end of the Montgomery brand of mutual funds.

Wells Fargo said Thursday that it had agreed to buy the majority of Montgomery's $5.8 billion of institutional and retail mutual fund assets from the German company for an undisclosed sum and that the assets will be rebranded under the Wells Fargo name.

Commerzbank had indicated for more than a year that it was interested in unloading the Montgomery unit, which it bought from Montgomery Securities in 1997 for about $250 million.

In 1997 the unit had about $8 billion of assets under management.

Montgomery spokesman Ed Dunn said Wells Fargo is buying most of Montgomery's assets but passed on some global funds that did not have a place in the Wells Fargo lineup. In all the San Francisco company is taking on $4.9 billion of Montgomery's $5.7 billion of managed assets. An industry source said he suspected that Wells agreed to pay less than $100 million for Montgomery.

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