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MF Signs Death Warrant for Short-Term Funding: William D. Cohan

Nov. 8 (Bloomberg) -- People ask me all the time: How could Wall Street powerhouses such as Bear Stearns Cos., Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and Merrill Lynch & Co. disappear virtually overnight?

How could MF Global Holdings Ltd. be here one day and gone the next? Why was Jefferies Group Inc., the midsized investment bank, whipsawed last week by rumors about its very survival because of questions about its exposure to European debt?