Wall Street prepared for a potential Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. bankruptcy after Barclays Plc said it pulled out of talks to buy the firm and the government indicated it wouldn't provide funds in a resolution.

Banks and brokers today held a session for netting derivatives transactions with Lehman, or canceling trades that offset each other, in case the New York-based firm files for bankruptcy before midnight New York time.


The step indicates that Wall Street lacks confidence that three days of talks to find a buyer for Lehman, held at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, will be successful. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who has led the talks with New York Fed President Timothy Geithner, was adamant two days ago against using taxpayer funds in a resolution.

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