The New York Stock Exchange has ordered Merrill Lynch to pay a $10 million fine for failure to deliver prospectuses to customers in mutual fund transactions and other supervisory and operational lapses.

Merrill failed to deliver prospectuses from October 2002 to March 2004 for 64,000 transactions involving the sale of registered, open-ended mutual fund securities. The firm also failed to deliver prospectuses for 900 transactions in approximately 275 accounts in auction-rate preferred stocks between January and July last year.

"The delivery problems we encountered were caused by coding problems that the firm discovered, corrected and subsequently reported to NYSE," said Mark Herr, a Merrill Lynch spokesman.

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