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Legg Mason's ClearBridge unit to drop parent's name from funds

Oct 11 (Reuters) - Mutual fund manager ClearBridge Advisors LLC said on Thursday it would drop the name of its struggling parent company, Legg Mason , from all of its U.S. funds over the next several months.

With $58 billion of assets under management, New York-based Clearbridge is the largest manager of equity funds at Legg Mason.

Baltimore-based Legg Mason has struggled with customer outflows, poor investment performance at some of its units and a stock price that remains mired at one-quarter the level it reached before the 2008 financial crisis. Chief Executive Mark Fetting stepped down at the beginning of October and Legg Mason hired search firm Korn/Ferry International to look for a replacement.

The ClearBridge fund naming move is "part of a larger effort by Legg Mason to highlight the brand identities of its affiliated investment managers in its product names," the companies said in a statement.

Under the new branding, the $4.4 billion Legg Mason ClearBridge Appreciation fund will be renamed the ClearBridge Appreciation fund.

(Reporting by Aaron Pressman; editing by Gunna Dickson)

((aaron.pressman@thomsonreuters.com)(+1-617-942-1752)(Reuters

Messaging: Aaron.Pressman.Reuters.com@Reuters.net))

Keywords: LEGGMASON CLEARBRIDGE/

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