Bear Stearns could be sold if losses from two hedge funds are steep, and the company's stock price continues to fall, CNBC's Charlie Gasparino reported.
Last week, Bear Stearns said it would spend about $1.6 billion to bail out one of the funds.
However, the total cost of the bailout won’t be known until July 16, when the total losses for both funds are calculated. Tallying the losses is taking longer than expected because the securities held by the funds are thinly traded and the market has been volatile, according to published reports.
Gasparino said "all sorts of rumors" are swirling around Wall Street about a possible sale of Bear Stearns.
"If the stock falls farther--and I would say the people I’m talking to tell me about $10 more--(then it) becomes a stock that clearly could be bought by a bigger player,” Gasparino said.
This would be a major event, because Bear Stearns has been a top performer for the last five years, he said.
But for now the venerable--or is that vulnerable?--Bear isn’t for sale.