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AMERICAN LEADING COMPANIES FUND LAUNCHED AS 13TH BY LEGG MASON

 BALTIMORE, Aug. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Leading Companies Trust was launched last Friday as the 13th mutual fund offered by Legg Mason Wood Walker, Inc.
 The new fund will apply Legg Mason's "value approach" in a broadly diversified fund of large capitalization ($2 billion-plus) stocks of companies that are recognized as leaders in their industries.
 Investment manager of the American Leading Companies Trust is J. Eric Leo, executive vice president and chief investment officer of Legg Mason Capital Management, which manages substantial portfolios for individuals and institutions.
 The new fund will seek to identify leading companies based on dominant market share in their industry along with strong and flexible management, financial strength and quality products and services.
 "A blue chip is not necessarily a leading company," Leo said. "More than just a few blue chips have served investors poorly in recent years. The leading companies will be the blue chips of tomorrow because they have the management talent to meet the challenges of the rapidly changing business environment. A strong balance sheet will afford an increased competitive position by enabling strong companies to reduce cost and improve the quality of products and services," he said.
 Leo said the mission of the American Leading Companies Trust is to identify companies that are leading the global transition from "machine power" to "brain power," just as former industrial leaders made the transition from "brawn power."
 The American Leading Companies Trust will invest at least three quarters of its assets in common stocks of large-capitalization companies that exhibit the ability to maintain or increase market share. The balance may be invested in foreign securities, lower market capitalization stocks or bonds. Up to 25 percent of the Fund's total assets may be invested in foreign securities.
 Legg Mason Capital Management, a subsidiary of Legg Mason, Inc. (NYSE: LM) has nearly doubled its assets under management since Leo joined the firm in 1991. Assets in Legg Mason Capital Management now total nearly $700 million.
 The Legg Mason Family of Funds has grown to include four common stock funds, three money market funds and six bond funds. The 13 Legg Mason funds have more than $3 billion in client assets and more than 215,000 shareholder accounts.
 Legg Mason Wood Walker, Inc. is a securities brokerage and financial services firm that is part of the Legg Mason, Inc. organization headquartered in Baltimore with 80 offices from Maine to Texas.
 -0- 8/23/93
 /CONTACT: Geraldine D. Leder of Legg Mason, 410-539-0000/
 (LM)


CO: Legg Mason Wood Walker, Inc.; Legg Mason, Inc. ST: Maryland IN: FIN SU: PDT

CC-LJ -- PH013 -- 5179 08/23/93 16:46 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 23, 1993
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