Thain's swansong will be to bequeath Merrill to BoA

The events that led to John Thain initiating and closing a $50 billion merger between Merrill Lynch and Bank of America over the same weekend that Lehman filed for bankruptcy.

Lawyers Shearman Sterling will be the only firm Merrill Lynch credits for advice on its merger with Bank of America, a deal valued at $50 billion based on share prices on September 12, and perhaps one of the last that Merrill will strike for its balance sheet as a standalone bank.

To some it may seem odd that Merrill Lynch had no financial adviser on a deal of this magnitude. But MerrillÆs CEO John Thain realised he had to negotiate...

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