A federal judge yesterday reluctantly approved the Securities and Exchange Commission’s $150 million settlement with Bank of America Corp., calling the agreement “better than nothing,” but “half-baked justice at best.”

In a 15-page opinion and order, Judge Jed Rakoff, of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in Manhattan, said that based “solely on the merits ... the court would reject the settlement as inadequate and misguided.”

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