07 November, 2007

Fear over Financials drags Markets lower Wednesday

North American markets were broadly lower Wednesday as investor fear in the Financials and further credit crisis write-downs caused massive selling. Major indices across America were off between 2 and 3%, with the biggest loser being the S&P 500.

The US Dollar continued to weaken against other major currencies setting a new record low against the Euro. For us Canucks (Canadians, for those not from North of the border), we saw our Loonie hit $1.10 before settling back to $1.07 and change. Great if you're planning a loot shopping session in Buffalo on the weekend, not so nice if you're holding American investments.

The Financials were the biggest victims, whether they deserved it or not. Fear of further write-downs and losses spurred selling that carried throughout the entire day.

The list of victims is as follows:
Citigroup (C) - Down 4.5%
Bank Of America (BAC) - Down 5%
Wachovia (WB) - Down 6.5%
JP Morgan (JPM) - Down 4.25%
Morgan Stanley (MS) - Down 6%
Goldman Sachs (GS) - Down 4%
Lehman Brothers (LEH) - Down 5.75%
Novastar Financial (NFI) - Down 2.75%
Washington Mutual (WM) - Down 17.25%
Countrywide Financial (CFC) - Down 9.25%

Not even high flying Technology could save this session as selling was seen across the board. The amount of trader fear that exists over further credit losses, makes this a scary time as yet to go bargain hunting. If trying to buy on the cheap, do it in blocks and stagger the purchases because this pent up fear carries with it more potential downside.

Cisco Systems (CSCO) reported after the bell, a strong profit quarter, in line with forecasts but their guidance and words sparked further after hours selling. The US Bank debacle has starting to creep into the technology sector according to Cisco, as orders for networking equipment from the Financials were much weaker and comments form Cisco management only stroked further fears. Shares were off 4% in trading and another 9% in after-hours trading, leading major tech futures lower going into tomorrow's trading session.

Disclosure: Author owns and has covered calls in C, BAC, WB, GS

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