Investment banks and brokerages have become the stock of choice for investors looking for some footing in financials, a trend that was evident yet again Monday, when stock prices of most brokerages rose while those of most banks fell.

"The banks are the ugly duckling of Wall Street," said David Allaire, co-advisor for the Imperial Bank Fund, a portfolio of financial stocks managed by Retirement Planning Co. of Providence, R.I. "Investment banking are being treated well by the market right now."

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