Once upon a time, the name Merrill Lynch was the most recognized, and maybe most respected Wall Street name. I even worked for the financial advisors part of Merrill Lynch out of the Denver office for a few years back in my financial planner days.
Then, in 2008, when the financial markets blew up, it turned out that Merrill Lynch had been selling toxic real estate securities… to itself.
That, plus a lot of other damage from the Great Recession drove Merrill Lynch into the arms of Bank of America, who scooped up the company.
BoA kept the Merrill Lynch name all of these years since, no doubt hoping that eventually the brand might recapture some of its cache. But, it turns out that American memories aren’t that short, and Merrill Lynch is no longer special, just another part of Wall Street. The Bank of America name actually carries just as much value, if not more.
So, BoA has announced that they’ll be ditching the Merrill brand, although it will keep some of the branded financial products (and those will continue to have the trademark bull logo.)