Bank of America Corp. (BAC), before its shareholders approved the bank's $50 billion buy of Merrill Lynch in December 2008, was informed of far greater losses at the investment firm than had been disclosed in proxy documents filed with regulators, BofA's then-chief executive, Kenneth Lewis, disclosed in court documents filed late Sunday in a shareholder lawsuit, the New York Times reported Sunday on its website.
Top BofA executives, including Lewis, days before the deal was approved were told the losses at Merrill Lynch would harm earnings at the combined company for years, although shareholders were not told of the coming losses, the newspaper reported, according to the documents, filed in Federal District Court in Manhattan.
Bank of America declined comment to the Times. A lawyer for Mr. Lewis, Andrew Ceresney, declined comment on the filing but noted that a motion filed Sunday on Mr. Lewis' behalf contended that the former CEO was told by BofA's law firm, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, and by other bank executives that it was not necessary to disclose the anticipated losses.
Full story at: www.nytimes.com/2012/06/04/business/bank-of-america-withheld-loss-figures-ahead-o -merrill-vote.html?pagewanted=1&hp
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