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Corzine Resigns as Head of Bankrupt MF Global

corzine_010911

In this Jan. 9, 2011 file photo, former New Jersey Gov. Jon S. Corzine reflects on his four year term in office during an interview with The Associated Press at his home in Hoboken, N.J. (AP2010)

Jon Corzine resigned Friday as chairman and chief executive of MF Global, the brokerage firm that spiraled into bankruptcy this week after the former Democratic New Jersey governor made risky bets on European debt.

Corzine declined a $12.1 million severance package, including cash and benefits, the firm said Friday.  

MF Global filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday after its bets on European debt spooked investors and trading partners.

The company is under investigation by regulators and the FBI because hundreds of millions disappeared from customer accounts as it slid toward bankruptcy.

Corzine ran Goldman Sachs and was governor of New Jersey before joining MF Global.

He said in a statement that he feels "great sadness about what has transpired at MF Global and the impact it has had on the firm's clients, employees and many others." He said he will continue to assist the company and its board as they continue to sort out what happened in the firm's final days.

Regulators say more than $600 million in client money is still missing. They say MF Global apparently moved the money out of client accounts in mere days as the company's cash dried up.

Corzine said his resignation was voluntary, and called it "a difficult decision."

MF Global says lead director Edward Goldberg and president and Chief Operating Officer Bradley Abelow will continue in their current positions.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.