Comerica Inc. wants to offer its mutual fund customers a piece of the action in hot Internet-related stocks.
The Detroit-based banking company's Munder Capital Management unit plans to launch a growth mutual fund that invests primarily in the stock of companies that provide Internet services or products.
Comerica last week asked for permission from the Securities and Exchange Commission to launch the fund.
According to the prospectus, the fund will invest in Internet access providers, network equipment manufacturers, computer hardware and software developers, financial services companies that have an Internet presence, and other Internet-related ventures.
Munder executives declined to discuss the fund while SEC approval was pending.
Other banks have also added stock funds to attract more investors. But Edward R. Hipp, the head of Centura Banks' brokerage unit, says Comerica should reconsider offering "a fad fund that is liable to create a lot of disappointment for a lot of people."
He said bank customers are as concerned with preserving their capital as they are in building it up.
"Banks would be ill advised to concentrate on a hot sector of the market that everyone knows will be big but no one knows if they can make money off of it," Mr. Hipp said.
Comerica's Munder unit manages the $5.4 billion-asset Munder Funds, the 22nd-largest complex run by a bank. They are unusual among banks' proprietary lines in that 40% of their assets are in stock funds and 28% in bond portfolios.