Tuesday, September 01, 2009

PricewaterhouseCoopers UK: Total Lehman Europe Claims May Exceed $100 Billion

PricewaterhouseCoopers UK issued this official PwC statement on their PwC UK website updating their efforts in the administration of Lehman Brothers International (Europe)

"The parent company, Lehman Brothers Holding Inc, and its various USA subsidiaries that are in Chapter 11, have all established a deadline for claims to be submitted in the next few weeks. We're dealing with a large number of entities and therefore the claims could be as much as $100 billion. These claims are exceptionally complex and we anticipate a large amount of further work in dealing with these claims. This is a normal part of the bankruptcy claims formulation and submission process. A significant number of claims arise as a result of guarantees issued by the parent company to its subsidiaries globally.

"We have invested a significant amount of time helping administrators in other affiliates understand the Lehman accounting systems so that we can all agree a standard approach to the reconciliation of inter company balances. If this can be achieved then it should reduce the likelihood of affiliates suing each other in pursuit of amounts that are owed between the different Lehman estates."

$100 Billion! That is an enormous number, and close to the 2008 GDP of the country of Kuwait. In bankruptcy though claimants likely only get cents on the dollar so in effect the actual monies coming back may be much more moderate.

Once you get past this shock, the second paragraph is also interesting. In effect, is PwC saying – affiliates, please get behind us in coming up with a common approach, else you will end up bickering and cross-suing each other to get any dollars back from a cleaned-out Lehman US entity??

No comments: