Merrill Lynch announced it accepted an offer of $29 a share from Bank of America becoming the most recent conquest in a growing line of Federal Reserve member commercial banks gobbling up investment banks.

Merrill Lynch is the second investment bank sold to a mega-bank rival after Bear Stearns succumbed six months ago to JPMorgan Chase.

Merrill Lynch Gone - Mega-Bank BofA Gets Bigger

I hope I am not the only one who worries about the orchestrated effort by the mega-banks, to wipe out their competition in the investment bank world by “bailout”. I put bailout in quotes because I don’t believe any of these investment banks are getting bailout…they are getting bought-out by a competitor whose been licking their lips waiting for an opportunity just like this one. put it this way,

“For Bank of America, which has been creating scale through a series or record-breaking acquisitions, the deal means it will be able to buy the place it has long coveted in the inner circle of investment firms. The behemoth a transaction would create would likely be one of the dominant institutions on Wall Street and be one of the most significant corporate combinations to emerge from the credit crisis.”

These buyouts like Merrill Lynch would not be so easy from a regulatory standpoint or from a price per share standout point either if they were attempted in any other environment other than the current “financial crisis” environment.

The consolidation of the money industry should bother everyone, and normally it would bother the SEC, the Treasury, and the FTC, but not now folks. Merrill Lynch can get folded into one of the Federal Reserve member banks and nobody says a word!

Merrill Lynch just got played…but they are not the last.

And if this consolidation continues and you have to go to one of three mega-banks to open a checking account, apply for a mortgage, or invest in stocks, you’ll know the American public got played too.

Good Luck!

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