Mergers among investment management companies are likely to pick up in 2000, with cross-border deals in the United Kingdom and Europe setting the pace, a leading mutual fund expert said Tuesday.

A. Michael Lipper, chairman of Lipper Inc., told reporters that the enactment of financial modernization legislation in the United States and the coming expiration of pooling-of-interests accounting treatment could also help to stimulate a new round of dealmaking. The need for fund companies to downsize to gain efficiency could play a role, he said at the Reuters subsidiary's annual outlook conference for reporters.

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