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Ex-Putnam Analyst To Join BNP Paribas

25 May 2002

Robert Sweeney, a veteran high-grade energy analyst, left Putnam Investments last Thursday and will join BNP Paribas as a director in its investment-grade research effort. Sweeney declined comment andJoe Labriola, head of research at BNP, did not return calls. It is assumed, however, that Sweeney was brought in to replace Dan Scotto, who was released from the firm last year (BW, 5/20). Individuals familiar with Sweeney's thinking on the matter say that he has made it perfectly clear to them that widely discussed turmoil within Putnam's bond operations this year is the reason for his departure. Calls to Paul Quistberg, Putnam's head of fixed-income research, and Stephen Peacher, cio, were not returned.

Several fixed-income executives on the buy- and sell-sides say that compensation at Putnam was particularly low this year, even by the diminished standards across other Street firms. A sell-side executive close to Putnam says he believes defections of firm employees have been a more serious issue than lost asset management mandates. He would not elaborate, however.

25 May 2002