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Bear Stearns Unveils Central America/Caribbean Bond Index; First of its Kind Index Will Help Investors Track $12.6 Billion in Emerging Markets Debt.

Business Editors

MIAMI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 14, 2003

Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc. today introduced the Bear Stearns Central America/Caribbean Bond Index (BSCAX). The index will track approximately $12.6 billion in debt, including 36 bond issues in 10 countries throughout Central America and the Caribbean. The new index was introduced at The Bear Stearns Central American and Caribbean Credit Conference and will compliment Bear Stearns current Fixed Income indexes, the High Yield Bond Index (BSIX) and the High Grade Bond Index (BSHG).

"BSCAX will give investors a simple way to track the performance of what is an increasingly important part of the emerging markets universe," said Carl Ross, head of Bear Stearns Emerging Markets Sovereign Research. "In addition, we can tailor this portfolio management tool to meet the individual needs of investors by comparing their portfolio with either existing indexes or a custom index. Specifically, BSCAX can be instrumental to investors when developing relative value strategies and performing portfolio optimization analysis."

Commenting on the new bond index, Martin St. Pierre, co-head of Fixed Income Derivatives Trading, said, "BSCAX focuses on an increasingly important component of the emerging markets universe, which is largely uncorrelated to some of the distressed credits that make up the bulk of that universe. This unique index will facilitate the creation of new products and will contribute to elevating the status of this region."

The Bear Stearns Central American and Caribbean Credit Conference, being held in Coconut Grove, Florida, features presentations by senior government officials from Panama, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Trinidad, Tobago, Guatemala, Barbados, Belize and Grenada.

Founded in 1923, The Bear Stearns Companies Inc. (NYSE: BSC) is the parent company of Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc., a leading investment banking and securities trading and brokerage firm serving governments, corporations, institutions and individuals worldwide. With approximately $30.6 billion in total capital, the company's business includes corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions, institutional equities and fixed income sales, trading and research, private client services, derivatives, foreign exchange and futures sales and trading, asset management and custody services. Through Bear, Stearns Securities Corp., it offers prime broker and broker dealer clearing services, including clearing and securities lending. Headquartered in New York City, the company has approximately 10,500 employees worldwide.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 14, 2003
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