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No More Bulk Cocaine For You! Bank of America Buys Countrywide

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What a difference a year makes. In a $4 billion stock deal, Bank of America will buy Calabasas-based Countrywide, which has lost more than 85% of its value over the past 52 weeks, according to Fox Business News. Bloomberg: Bank of America Chief Executive Officer Ken Lewis said "combined company won't make subprime loans and will limit its purchases of large packages of loans from other lenders. 'I don't like the cocaine of large bulk purchases,' he said." Los Angeles Times: Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo could walk away with $115 million after deal. NY Times: Here comes the mud-slinging. "Countrywide has been a rogue lender with a rogue leader,” said Martin Eakes, chief executive of the Center for Responsible Lending. Guardian: No immediate word on job cuts. Countrywide ended December with 50,600 employees, laying off 11,000 earlier in year. Forbes: Deal shows how "desperate" Countrywide is and may be "sign that the mortgage market will continue to worsen before it improves."