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Merrill Lynch (SWOT Analysis)

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“SWOT is an acronym for the internal Strengths and Weaknesses of a firm and the environmental Opportunities and Threats facing that firm. SWOT analysis is a widely used technique through which managers create a quick overview of a company’s strategic situation. The technique is based on the assumption that an effective strategy derives from a sound “fit” between a firm’s internal resources (strengths and weaknesses) and its external situation (opportunities and threats). A good fit maximizes a firm’s strengths and opportunities and minimizes its weaknesses and threats. Accurately applied, this simple assumption has powerful implications for the design of a successful strategy.”

Merrill Lynch 

Merrill Lynch is one of the world's leading wealth management, capital markets and advisory companies, with offices in 38 countries and territories. Merrill Lynch has a considerable advantage over its competitors, being a major market player in most of its businesses lines. The company is a leading global investment banking firm that participates in virtually all aspects of investment banking for corporate, institutional, government and municipal clients. Diversity of offerings allows Merrill Lynch to maximize its opportunity base and minimize losses in declining segments. However, the company’s exposure to subprime mortgage backed assets and the consequent losses could undermine its position in the global investment banking industry.

Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT)

Location of Factor






  • Broad offerings
  • Strong presence in global wealth management (GWM)
  • Growing international business


  • Credit ratings downgraded



  • Enhancing scope through acquisitions
  • Expansion in Middle East
  • Positive outlook for asset management industry


  • Consolidation in the banking industry
  • Increased regulatory pressures for investment banks in the US
  • Credit crunch
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