US stocks plunge as Lehmans crumbles

US investment and lending giants saw their share value plunge in opening trading off the back of Lehman Brothers\' bankruptcy.

Washington Mutual fell 21% in opening trading. Although it had regained some ground to a fall of just 13% at time of writing, the market is concerned that it has up to $19bn worth of bad mortgages.

Lehman Brothers’ share price plunged 93% after it filed for bankruptcy to just 25 cents.

But Merrill Lynch’s share price soared when the New York Stock Exchange opened off the back of its sale to Bank of America. At time of writing it was up 28% to $21.