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Lehman Rumour, Exits Beckon For Bear & Citi Bosses, UBS

Rumours were flying Wednesday that Lehman Brothers was to announce a $7bn write-down, prompting a drop in the firm's share price at one stage of over $4 a share. Lehman, however, quickly came out and denied the rumour that any write-down anouncement would be made. But someone, it seems, has made a killing on November puts. Speculation is mounting that this might all be a reserve pump and dump play.

Two Hospitalized CEOs Recover Well

ABN AMRO CEO Rijkman Groenink was rushed to hospital last month and had to undergo an emergency operation following a perforated appendix. Since then he has lost his job - he's stepping down on November 1st, when the bank he restructured to death changes hands with the appointment of a new board full of representatives from acquirers Fortis, Royal Bank of Scotland and Santander.

Dresdner, JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley, Wachovia

The Times reports that Dresdner Bank is one of a number of European firms considering joining up to the $80bn fund set up by Bank of America, Citi and JPMorgan Chase to purchase assets which have lost value following the recent US subprime lending crisis and subsequent credit crunch.

Oops - Rumours Of Even Bigger Losses At Top Firm

Merrill Lynch - Oops

Both Trader Daily and The New York Post have reports that rumours coming out of Merrill Lynch suggest that there are likely to be 'substantial' additional losses announced by the firm Wednesday, when it unveils its third-quarter numbers. Merrill came out a couple of weeks back and acknowledged that, because of the recent market turmoil, it will write-down around $5.5bn in the period and will post its first quarterly trading loss for some six years.

Hedge Funds - Gossip, Rumours & Allegations

FINalteratives reports that an associate of Seth Tobias, the founder of hedge fund Circle T Partners who was found dead in his pool last month, claims that his widow Filomena confessed to murdering her husband during a telephone call the week following his death.

Bear Stearns Does Deal

Bear Stearns and China government-controlled Citic Securities have announced a deal whereby they will each invest $1bn in each other, and will combine their operations in Asia. Citic will acquire securities that will convert to a 6% equity stake in Bear, and will then have the option to purchase a further 3.9% of the firm over time. Bear will acquire debt which will convert to 2% of Citic and has been given options to buy an additional 5% of the Chinese firm over the next 5 years.

Commerzbank, BNP, NYBOT, RBS, UBS, LBOs, IPOs

The Wall Street Journal reports that Klaus-Peter Mueller, Commerzbank's CEO, has said that his firm is not in takeover or merger talks at present, mentioning that he had 'no knowledge (either) of other intstitutions' currently having takeover plans for us'.