Boy, what a wild 72 hours we've experienced. After Lehman Brothers' failure, AIG's
First, let's be clear: There's no indication Washington Mutual
The New York Post reports that the government is now actively seeking a buyer for the bank, and WaMu appears to be cooperating. In a report, a Merrill Lynch analyst says WaMu's board of directors would be open to seeking a merger with another bank, even if it meant sacrificing itself at a fire-sale price. After last week's downgrades, which left its debt rating at essentially "junk" status, management may be inclined to take precautionary measures before things get worse.
So if a sale is on the horizon, who would buy this beleaguered beast? According to the Post, federal regulators have contacted JPMorgan Chase
One bank we can take off the table is Bank of America
I'm tending to lean toward a merger with either Goldman Sachs or Morgan Stanley. The two remaining independent investment banks are getting hammered this morning as investors realize the days of stand-alone investment banks are numbered. They both need access to a stable deposit base, which is one of the only things WaMu has in its favor right now. Agreed, it's a long shot, but options are running thin for all remaining players these days.
Stay tuned. It doesn't look like this week's crazy events are over quite yet.
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