Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report

could end up cutting 30,000 jobs as it moves to absorb

Merrill Lynch

(MER)

, three times as many as previously estimated,

CNBC

reports, citing sources.

As of Tuesday, sources were saying that layoffs could total at least 10,000 and would start before the end of the year,

CNBC

reports.

But Bank of America CEO Kenneth Lewis wants to garner $7 billion in savings from the merger over the next few years, so the total number of jobs lost could be closer to 30,000, sources said, according to

CNBC

.

Some of these job cuts could be through attrition or the sale of some businesses. But the heaviest cuts will probably come in the investment banking business, which has dried up during the current credit crisis.

Combined, Bank of America and Merrill would have 260,000 employees, according to the report. About 50,000 are in the banks' investment banking operations. The majority of the layoffs are likely to come from Merrill's side of the business,

CNBC

reports.

This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.com.