Influential mutual fund tracker Morningstar has upgraded its perspective on Bank of America's scandal-plagued Columbia Funds, which after a 2004 merger with FleetBoston now includes the equally troubled Nations Funds.

On the heels of a recent settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission and a site inspection by the Chicago-based investment researcher, Morningstar has lifted its "don't send new money" recommendation on Columbia Funds. But as Russel Kinnel, director of fund research at Morningstar, added, "that doesn't mean we're giving the shop a ringing endorsement."

Subscribe Now

Access to premium content including in-depth coverage of mutual funds, hedge funds, 401(K)s, 529 plans, and more.

3-Week Free Trial

Insight and analysis into the management, marketing, operations and technology of the asset management industry.