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JPMorgan Buys Bear on the Cheap

With bankruptcy looming, the banks reach a deal: JPMorgan will acquire the troubled investment house for only $2 a share

In the end, Bear Stearns (BSC), the once-storied New York investment firm that became the victim of an old-fashioned run on the bank, wasn't worth much more than a subway ride.

JPMorgan Chase (JPM), the big bank that helped bail out Bear last Friday, is paying just $2 a share to take over the investment firm, which a little over a year ago was trading for as high as $170 a share. The deal to buy Bear will avert a looming bankruptcy filing by the investment firm and potentially stave off a new crisis in the financial markets.