His stupid acquisition of Merrill Lynch (shotgun wedding organized by Ben Bernanke and Hank Paulson) is the reason of his leaving. But let's not forget that he also acquired one of the most corrupt companies in the US, and one of those making the biggest losses: Countrywide Financial.
His epitaph at BofA should probably be what he said on the 15th of September 2008:
When asked why he didn't wait until Monday to get Merrill at a lower price, Bank of America CEO Ken Lewis stated "the strategic opportunity was so compelling it couldn't wait."
Here's a quote from the Bloomberg report:
Lewis, 62, said yesterday he will resign as chief executive officer at the end of the year, leaving his successor to capitalize on, or salvage, the acquisitions that led to his downfall. The bank didn’t name a replacement.You can also read my previous posts about Ken Lewis.
The CEO has become a distraction, pilloried by regulators and lawmakers since he engineered the $29 billion takeover of Merrill Lynch & Co. in January and bought subprime home lender Countrywide Financial Corp. in 2008, said CreditSights Inc. analyst David Hendler.