Merrill Lynch has hired Joanne Bryant-Rubio as a vice-president in the capital introductions team of its Hong Kong prime broking unit. In that capacity, she will be following in the Merrill Lynch cap intros lineage of Yvonne Wong and Martin Visairas.

Bryant-Rubio comes from CLSA in London where she has been selling Asian strategy hedge funds and capital raising for funds during the last two years, and before then was at fund of hedge funds Atlas Capital.

She will report to Dan McNicholas, the head of sales of Pacific Rim global markets financing and futures, and also work closely with recent hire Jim Fallon.

Why, you might ask, would a firm hire a capital introductions top cat like Jim Fallon, and then give someone else the job of cap intros? It's because Fallon was hired to do a mixed role of sales and capital introductions; so he will be giving her the benefit of his experience and still be involved in some capacity.

Merrill is hiring because it perceives the Hong Kong hedge fund market is recovering quickly, and hedge funds are crying out for more capital. To those hedge fund clients who note that Bank Of America's commitment to its own prime brokerage waned last year, Merrill points out that Bank of America never had the global markets platform to support a thriving prime broking business, but that they continue to possess this advantage.