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The Lehman Brothers carve up continues

As the dust starts to settle on the Lehman Brothers debacle we are seeing more and more groups come forward to cherry pick the better operations of the fallen giant. Barclays announced the purchase of the US operation last week and we have now seen Nomura step forward for a slice of the Asian operations. There is also speculation that both Barclays and Nomura are in the bidding for the European division with the UK office seen to be the jewel in the crown.

While the group may be dead and buried it seems that there is more than enough for the vultures to pick over. We may well look back in a couple of years and appreciate the bargains that both Nomura and Barclays have negotiated but at the moment it feels as though they are literally jumping into the lions den of an industry which is still struggling.

It will be interesting to see how much is raised from these fire sales and which part of the businesses are left to curl up and die. The truth is that the group as a whole struggled because of the weakened balance sheet while many of the individual operations were still trading comfortably within their financial limits.

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