Read the complete Inroduction
Ken Lewis, the CEO of Bank of America, is in trouble: a stock collapse; a rocky merger; the worst fourth-quarter losses in at least 17 years; a stockholder revolt; an urgent need to raise more capital despite a $45 billion infusion from the federal government. And on top of that, he effectively has a new boss: President Barack Obama.
In Breaking the Bank, FRONTLINE producer Michael Kirk (Inside the Meltdown, Bush’s War) draws on a rare combination of high-profile interviews with key players Ken Lewis and former Merrill Lynch CEO John Thain to reveal the story of two banks at the heart of the financial crisis, their rocky merger, and the government’s new role in taking over — some call it “nationalizing” — the American banking system.
Chapter 1: September ’08: Markets Are Seizing Up
Chapter 2: The Bank of America-Merrill Merger
Chapter 3: The Day Everything Changed
Chapter 4: Lewis Wants Out of the Merrill Deal
Chapter 5: A New Day