“It only took 4,209 days, but I am finally even!!!” So declared Stephen Bearce, now a broker at Wells Fargo. He had taken a flier on 100 Bear Stearns shares amid its epic collapse from $171.51 — its record closing price on Jan. 12, 2007 — to where Bearce bought it at $30 a share on Friday, March 14, 2008. By the following Monday, it was sold in a pre-bankruptcy fire sale to JPMorgan Chase & Co. at $2 a share in stock. (Eventually, JPMorgan raised its bid to $10.) It took more than a decade for gains in JPMorgan shares to bring Bearce’s investment back to break even.
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