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Byline: David Nicklaus
Apr. 18--Whispers are out. Webcasts are in.
And, despite some griping from Wall Street analysts, the 6-month-old Regulation FD (for "fair disclosure") has succeeded in putting individual investors on a level playing field with the big institutions.
"It's really created an information bonanza for the individual investor," said Lou Thompson, president of the National Investor Relations Institute.
Before the Securities and Exchange Commission imposed the rule last Oct. 1, companies could talk freely with analysts about their profit projections.
Both sides developed bad habits: Lazy analysts could rely on companies to spoon-feed them with profit estimates, and companies could persuade pliable analysts to keep their estimates on the low side, thus …