Deal to buy large part of firm out of bankruptcy makes UK bank a Wall Street giant

A huge part of Lehman Brothers in the US has been bought out of bankruptcy by UK bank Barclays.

The agreement was struck last night in a $2bn (£1.1bn) deal, and will mean Barclays taking on between 8,000 and 10,000 staff.

The move, which will see Barclays become one of the biggest banks on Wall Street, comes just days after the British company failed to reach a rescue deal with Lehman.

The UK bank has agreed to pay $250m in cash and take on $72bn in trading assets and $68bn in trading liabilities. It is also buying the Lehman headquarters in New York and two data centres in New Jersey for $1.5bn.

Barclays president Bob Diamond called the deal a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity”.