Brookfield Asset Management, one of Canada's biggest commercial-property owners, and Simon Property Group, the largest mall owner in the U.S., have been buying the debt of bankrupt General Growth Properties, sources said. Brookfield has accumulated nearly $1 billion in unsecured debt, possibly preparing a bid to acquire some or all of General Growth's portfolio, the sources said. Meanwhile, Simon reportedly hired legal and financial advisers to assist in forming a bid.

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