Merrill Lynch's Europe 2001 HOLDRs

(EKH:Amex) began trading today on the

American Stock Exchange.

Merrill issued 1 million Europe 2001 HOLDRs yesterday at $98.12 apiece. The latest HOLDRs offering invests in 50 of the largest European companies whose stocks trade on the American Stock Exchange, the

New York Stock Exchange or

Nasdaq.

Europe 2001 is the 15th HOLDRs offering from Merrill Lynch. HOLDRs, hybrids of a fund and a stock, are exchange-traded baskets of at least 20 stocks focused on one specific industry or stock category, such as semiconductors, regional banks and pharmaceuticals.

The top five stocks in Europe 2001 HOLDRs by weighting are:

Bookham Technology

(BKHM)

,

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Jazztel PLC

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,

SmartForce PLC

(SMTF)

,

ASM International

(ASMI)

and

Terra Networks

(TRLY)

.