NEW YORK

JPMorgan Chase to aquire Bear Stearns

JPMorgan Chase said Sunday it will acquire rival Bear Stearns in a deal valued at $236.2 million, a stunning collapse for one of the world’s largest and most venerable investment banks.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. said the $2 a share, all-stock deal has received the required approvals from the federal government and the Federal Reserve. Bear Stearns shares close Friday at $30 a share.

The Fed will provide special financing to JPMorgan Chase for the deal, JPMorgan Chase said. The central bank has agreed to fund up to $30 billion of Bear Stearns’ less liquid assets.

WASHINGTON

Federal Reserve implements steps to avoid credit crisis

The Federal Reserve announced a series of new steps yesterday to help provide relief to a spreading credit crisis that threatens to plunge the economy into recession.

The central bank approved a cut to its lending rate to financial institutions to 3.25 percent from 3.50 percent, effective immediately, and created another lending facility for big investment banks to secure short-term loans.

The steps are “designed to bolster market liquidity and promote orderly market functioning,” the Fed said in a statement. “Liquid well-functioning markets are essential for the promotion of economic growth.”

BEIJING

Dalai Lama calls for China investigation

The Dalai Lama called yesterday for an international investigation into China’s crackdown against protesters in Tibet, which he said is facing a “cultural genocide” and where his exiled government said 80 people were killed in the violence.

The demonstrations were the fiercest challenge to Beijing’s rule in the region in nearly two decades, leading to sympathy protests elsewhere and embarrassing China ahead of the Olympic Games.

Along with 80 killed, some 72 people were injured in the protests, said Thubten Samphel, a spokesman for the exiles. He said the figures were confirmed by multiple sources inside Tibet who had counted corpses. China’s state media said 10 people died.

BAGHDAD

McCain visits Iraq

Sen. John McCain, the likely Republican presidential nominee, arrived in Baghdad on yesterday for a visit with Iraqi and U.S. diplomatic and military officials.

The trip by McCain, who has linked his political future to U.S. military success in the nearly five-year-old war, coincided with the 20th anniversary of a horrific chemical weapons attack in northern Iraq.

McCain met with Deputy Prime Minister Barham Saleh and planned to meet with Gen. David Petraeus, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, according to the U.S. Embassy. Further details of McCain’s visit, which had been anticipated, were not being released for security reasons, the embassy said.

Before leaving the United States, McCain, one of the foremost proponents of the March 2003 U.S.-led invasion, said the trip to the Middle East and Europe was for fact-finding purposes, not a campaign photo opportunity.

– Compiled from Daily wire reports

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