More than two years after it collapsed in the biggest bankruptcy in U.S. history, Lehman Brothers is still shelling out money.
The firm's total bankruptcy expenses reached about $1 billion in September, as it paid its lawyers and managers about $50 million during the month (Bloomberg Businessweek puts the total just above $1 billion, and the Wall Street Journal calculates a figure just below that mark). According to Businessweek, Lehman pays its advisers at a rate of $1.3 million every day of the year, for what has become the most expensive bankruptcy in the nation's history, outpacing Enron's.
Lehman's ghost has been busy. Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., the company that oversees the bankruptcy, has plowed more than $1 billion into its commercial real estate investments, hoping to maximize the returns that, one day, maybe, will come, the Wall Street Journal reported in August. The bank's commercial real estate holdings, which the WSJ says were once worth about $14.4 billion, contributed to the bank's collapse. New returns on those assets will be used to repay creditors.
Last month, an auction of Lehman's art at Sotheby's took in almost $12.3 million, enough to cover about nine days of legal fees.