Indonesia halts Merrill Lynch's local stock trading

JAKARTA Fri Oct 5, 2012 7:08am EDT

JAKARTA Oct 5 (Reuters) - Indonesia's securities depository agency has frozen Merrill Lynch Indonesia's stock trading account, following a court order after a legal battle with an investor, a stock exchange official said on Friday.

Uriep Budhi Prasetyo, a director at the stock exchange, said the exchange had received a letter from the Jakarta high court to suspend Merrill Lynch's account after a dispute between the brokerage and an Indonesian investor.

"We are only following orders from the court," Prasetyo said, without naming the nature of the dispute or the company.

Merrill Lynch, a unit of Bank of America Corp, was not immediately available for comment.

The stock exchange and the depository agency will wait for a court decision to reopen the account, Prasetyo added.

Investment banks and brokerages have ramped up operations in Indonesia in recent years, aiming to take advantage of greater investor interest and surging markets in southeast Asia's top economy, which won an investment-grade credit rating late last year.

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