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Friday, January 22, 2010

Morning Market Report

It was a bloody day in the markets yesterday. The Dow lost more than 200, and it's lost over 300 since Wednesday. Some of the blame, at least, is being put on the shoulders of the President's new plan to curb bank activities.



Stock futures indicated another rough day for Wall Street on Friday after the previous day's selloff on the back of President Obama's proposed new restrictions on the financial industry.

Futures were well off their lows for the morning after General Electric posted earnings that beat analyst estimates, sending its shares up 1.2 percent in premarket trading.

...



A plunge in financial stocks weighed heavily on the broader market as President Barack Obama proposed the most extensive curbs on banks' risk-taking since the
outbreak of the recent financial crisis.

J.P. Morgan Chase and Bank of America were two of the worst performers. J.P. Morgan fell 4.2% and Bank of America was down 3.9%. Goldman Sachs Group fell 3.5%, despite reporting stronger-than-expected earnings before the bell. Citigroup slid 4.1%.




The President is trying a new populist approach...

President Obama will travel to the Cleveland suburbs Friday -- the second leg of his "White House to Main Street" jobs tour -- where he will meet and talk with local employees and visit a sporting goods factory to see the production of baseball and football helmets.

Considering the mood in the country, his aides might recommend that Obama wear one of those helmets.

The president planned to use his visit Friday to Elyria, Ohio, to test-drive an
aggressive populist push on jobs, a top concern for voters across the country as the White House begins a message shift heading into fall elections expected to be difficult for Democrats.


If this new found populism causes the equity markets to take a big step back, that won't do anyone any good. The equity markets have been performing well during the last nine months. Dumping on banks, big oil, and insurance companies may seem like a good idea but it won't do their stocks any good.

Bonds continue to improve while equities are getting hurt. The ten year is worse this morning but still much better over the last week. It's down to a yield of 3.62%. It fell below 3.60% yesterday. The yield spread between the two and ten year is now at 2.87%. That's a new record. The three month t bill is steady at .041%.

It was a bloody day across the board in both the Far East and so far in Europe. The Hang Seng in China was down .65%, the NIKKEI was down 2.56%, and the Straits Time Index was down 1.1%. In Europe, the FTSE in London is down .92%, DAX in Germany is down 1.06%, and the Spanish index is down 1.39%.

The Dollar is mixed this morning. It's down .26% against the Euro, up .59% against the British Pound, and down .24% against the Japanese Yen.

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