Photo Credit: geishaboy500

Just saw this on before I get ready to leave:

Bank of America on Monday began adding another slice to its growing financial services empire, buying Merrill Lynch in a $50 billion deal that would create a bank offering everything from fixed-income trading to credit card lending.

The deal values Merrill at $29 a share. That represents a 70 percent premium over the brokerage’s Friday closing price of $17.05, but well below what Merrill was worth at its peak in early 2007, when its shares traded above $98.

Also big news in finances:

Lehman Brothers, burdened by $60 billion in soured real-estate holdings, filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition in U.S. Bankruptcy Court after attempts to rescue the 158-year-old firm failed.

If I learn more, I’ll pass it on.

Update @ 12:45pm EST: BoingBoing has some great reader commentary on the financial news and CNBC has Wilbur Ross sharing his thoughts on possible opportunities for larger banks to pick up smaller regional banks .