08 July, 2008

Bernanke comments lead to rally in Financials

Comments by Ben Bernanke, Fed Chairman, today lifted markets, especially for those battered companies in the Financial sector. In what could be called a "relief" rally, the worst 3 to 6 month performers in the sector received today the biggest lift in months.

Bernanke's comments sought for the Fed to increase its oversight ability and its power/resources in order to prevent future financial turmoil. In essence Bernanke wants to Fed to have new regulatory responsibilities and supervisory oversight of the Financial markets and Financial companies.

In light of the commentary and an almost $6 drop in Oil Futures, The Financial sector posted a board of green.
Bank Of America (BAC) up 8%
Washington Mutual (WM) up 15%
Citigroup (C) up 5%
Wachovia (WB) up 10%
Lehman Brothers (LEH) up 4.5%
Goldman Sachs (GS) up 3%
JPMorgan Chase (JPM) up 4.5%

While today's rally definitely was a relief for longer term holders of these companies, the industry as a whole, is by no means out of the woods. The Financials will still feel the pressure of the lingering sub-prime and mortgage troubles, and it wont be till the losses and write-downs fully subside can it become business-as-usual for some of America's most recognized corporate names.

Disclosure: Author owns C, GS

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