Those investors who insisted on buying or holding on to their Bear Stearns stock, keeping prices at near three times the $2 per share being offered by J.P. Morgan Chase appear to have been on to something.
The New York Times reported shortly after Midnight on Monday that J.P. Morgan representatives had spent Easter Sunday in negotiations to change the terms of their week-old federally assisted deal to buy the failing investment bank. Stockholders, including Bear Stearns employees who control 30 percent of the stock and face losing their jobs as well as much of their 401(k) and other portfolios, and British billionaire Joseph Lewis who controls another 8.35 percent of the stock have expressed extreme displeasure over the terms of the deal and the role the Federal Reserve played in it and have threatened to block it.
The Times first report said that J.P. Morgan was considering quadrupling its earlier offer, but other early morning news reports were saying that the bid would be in the vicinity of $10 per share. There were also reports that the Federal Reserve was strongly opposed to changing the original terms and might quash any new proposals.