Apparently, no one wants to be CEO of the nation's largest bank. The protracted search for a new Bank of America CEO may last until 2010, reports Bloomberg.
In fact, the delay may force embattled CEO Ken Lewis to hold off on his retirement, or the bank may name an interim CEO. But the position does not seem to be high on any Wall Streeter's list. Bloomberg reports:
Bank of America faces pressure to pick someone in a short period who's acceptable to regulators and whose pay would be low enough to win approval from Treasury Department paymaster Kenneth Feinberg, the people said. Politics also has influenced the choice at the biggest U.S. bank, the people said. House Oversight Committee Chairman Edolphus Towns said last week Brian Moynihan, one of two internal candidates, may lack the needed leadership.
That's narrowing the field and giving the board "an incredibly tough job," said Michael Holland, who oversees more than $4 billion as chairman of Holland & Co. in New York. "For people who have choices, it's hard to figure out why someone would take this job."
But who are the potential candidates? Well, we know the irascible AIG CEO Robert Benmosche has already whined about running a company overseen by Obama's pay czar Kenneth Feinberg.
From Bank of America's hometown, comes the possibility that newly-departed GMAC head, Alvaro de Molina could actually be the bank's next leader. Here's WSOC-TV: "UNC Charlotte finance professor Tony Plath told Channel 9 Eyewitness News Monday night, 'We know he lives in Charlotte. He's partial to Charlotte. He would be likely to keep the headquarters here so, all in all, it's been a good day for Charlotte. Let's see how this plays out.'"
According to some very unsubstantiated rumors, the Business Insider suggested that former New Jersey Governor -- and Goldman Sachs chief -- John Corzine could step in for Lewis.
For his part, the ubiquitous Wall Street analyst Dick Bove said last week that Lewis may even stay on as the bank's CEO. The Charlotte Business Journal got a hold of a recent letter Bove wrote to his clients: "Approximately one week ago, in a fit of pique with the demonstrated incompetence of the Bank of America Board of Directors to select a new CEO, I argued that Ken Lewis should be brought back. At that time, it was simply a stated wish. Now I am beginning to believe that Mr. Lewis could in fact be back."