Advertisement

Archive for Saturday, June 13, 2009

CEO felt pressured to buy Merrill Lynch

June 13, 2009

Advertisement

— House lawmakers on Thursday accused federal regulators of a gross misuse of power in orchestrating a “shotgun wedding” between Bank of America Corp. and Merrill Lynch & Co. that cost U.S. taxpayers $20 billion.

They also took aim at Bank of America Chief Executive Officer Kenneth Lewis, questioning whether he played dumb last fall as Merrill’s financial losses mounted and threatened not to go through with the merger to squeeze money from the government.

In testimony before the committee, Lewis said publicly for the first time that his job was threatened after he expressed second thoughts about the merger. Lewis said then-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and federal regulators made clear that if the bank reneged on its promise they would force his ouster and that of board members at the bank.

Comments

Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.