Investors Growl at Bear's Sale Price
Expectations are that a raft of lawsuits will be filed by angry shareholders, employees and other market participants, who are witnessing a $236 million buyout deal that values the 85-year-old firm's shares at a 90% discount to its closing price on Friday. The offer includes a $30 billion financing package by the Federal Reserve.
Billionaire investor Joe Lewis, a large Bear shareholder who has plowed money into the New York-based investment bank amid its trouble the past few months, referred to JPMorgan's buyout offer as "derisory" to CNBC on Monday. Lewis could look to lose about $1 billion in Bear Stearns since investing in the company over the past several months for prices as high as $177 a share in January.
Already, an investor group known Eastside Holding, has filed a complaint today in Manhattan federal court alleging that Bear misrepresented to investors its financial condition, according to Bloomberg. The complaint was filed by San Diego-based law firm Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins and represents shareholders who have acquired the firms stock from Dec. 14, 2006, through March 14, 2008.news of a bailout. JPMorgan offered to provide a backstop credit facility funded through the Fed's discount window -- the lender of last resort -- for the troubled investment bank, as clients withdrew money from it at a rapid clip. The move at the time seemed like the prelude to a kiss, but no one could have imagined that a weekend-long round of negotiations involving the Fed would result in a sale of the company to JPMorgan for a song.
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