Software maker

Sybase

(SYBS)

was up 3% in early trading.

Merrill Lynch

upgraded it to mid- to long-term buy from accumulate.

The move comes after Sybase's stock tumbled on news that it will acquire

New Era of Networks

(NEON) - Get Report

.

Merill said it expects flat earnings-per-share growth in 2001 caused by the acquisition and 15% to 20% growth in 2002.