WASHINGTON — Bank of America Corp. officials discussed their potential benefit from a government rescue the day before telling U.S. officials the bank was considering walking away from buying Merrill Lynch & Co., according to new documents.

Handwritten notes and emails subpoenaed by a congressional committee would appear to undermine the bank's repeated contention it was convinced it had a reasonable basis to walk away from the Merrill deal, according to people familiar with the investigation.

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