Anxiety about Lehman bankruptcy leads to plunge in Sensex

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Mumbai, Sept 15 (UNI) Indian bourses today plunged heavily amid anxiety over the global financial scenario on news of Global Investment bank Lehman Brothers' bankruptcy and the takeover of Merrill Lynch.

Worries about the forced restructuring of the world's largest insurance company, American International Group Inc, also weighed on local investors.

A leading investment analyst here said the developments have dimmed prospects of Indian companies seeking international financing to fuel their own expansions.

He said the fall today in the market is because of what's happening in the world and not in India.

Anticipation that international funding for Indian companies seeking to expand will not materialize, which would trim domestic corporate growth and squeeze price-earnings ratios going forward, fuelled the broad-based sell-off, he said.

Brokers said a string of lethal bomb blasts across New Delhi on Saturday evening weighed less on investor sentiments. ''We take bomb blasts in stride. As these things are unfortunately common for us,'' brokers said A leading banker said, ''Lehman is looking at selling its broker-dealer operations, and is still in advanced discussions with a number of potential buyers of its investment management division.

Bankruptcy represents the end of a 158-year old company that survived world wars and the collapse of Long-Term Capital Management, but could not survive the global credit crunch.'' UNI AR SR NP1932

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