Lehman May Sell Real Estate Assets: Report

The troubled investment bank is in talks about selling its commercial real estate assets and securities, the <I>FT</I> reports.
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Lehman Brothers (LEH) is in talks about selling off its commercial real estate investments in an effort to beef up its balance sheet, according to a published media report.

The troubled investment bank is looking to sell its $40 billion portfolio of real estate assets and securities and has discussed selling the assets together or in pieces, according to a

Financial Times

report citing people who have been in the talks.

The anonymous sources said that there is a gap between what Lehman and potential buyers think the assets are worth, the report said. Lehman has tried to attract buyers by offering to absorb the first $5 billion in losses that the portfolio's assets might suffer after a sale, the report added.

Lehman's shares closed Friday at $16.17, down 75% from the end of last year. Fallout from the subprime mortgage meltdown has led to huge losses for the investment bank, an in June it had to sell common stock to raise more capital. In recent months there has been speculation that Lehman could become another

Bear Stearns

(LEH)

, which collapsed in March after an erosion of confidence on the part of investors and trading partners.

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