THE 158 YEARS OLD INVESTMENT BANK FROM THE WALL ST. was finally 'allowed' to go bankrupt by the Federal Govt. By one observation time was against Lehman on two accounts - plenty as well as too short: on one hand, time was too short for them to find a suitable buyer and thus save filing for bankruptcy protection; on the other hand, their stakeholders were considered to have sufficient time to make appropriate arrangements and were thus considered fit to fend for themselves (and go bankrupt... Unlike in the case of Bear Stearns which was prevented from going bankrupt by being 'purchased' by JP Morgan and thus its stakeholders were rather spared).
It is not perhaps how large Lehman is and the impact it would generate; the real point to ponder is - is it the first is line? and, who would be next?
Also, is the market at large really ready for a new phase of consolidation? What is with the rumors of BofA and Merrill Lynch merger?
And while there is enough flux in motion, opinions are abound in all streams of media. In an interesting analysis of market reaction to the event through media, following graph shows how data on Wikipedia co-related with Lehman timeline:
[Go here for official Bankruptcy protection announcement.]
[Go here for Paul Kedrosky's 'tracking Lehman'.]