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U.S. financial management giant Merrill Lynch & Co. announced Thursday it plans to open a new brokerage house in Japan this summer and will hire about 2,000 former employees of the failed Yamaichi Securities Co. to work in about 30 outlets across the country.

The new firm, tentatively named Merrill Lynch Japan Securities Co., will be the first foreign brokerage firm in Japan to target individual investors. It plans to provide investment services such as investment trusts, and Japanese and foreign equities and bonds, said Winthrop Smith, Jr., the chairman of Merrill Lynch International, at a Tokyo news conference.

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