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Market Update

Pioneer Funds' Parent Puts Itself Up for Sale

Faced with sluggish growth, the parent company of Pioneer Funds considers a sale or merger.

Shares of Pioneer Group (PIOG) slumped Monday morning as investors digested news that the owner of a mutual-fund family and other businesses was considering selling itself.

In midmorning trading, Pioneer was down 1 1/8, or about 6%, on the Nasdaq stock market. The company, which has a family of 21 mutual funds sold through intermediaries, a venture-capital unit, and other diverse interests, including an African gold mine, said it had hired Merrill Lynch and Salomon Smith Barney to explore a possible sale or merger.