What a difference a year makes.
As investors celebrate the bull market’s one-year anniversary, US stocks are up yet again today, although there’s some curious trading occurring in some beleaguered financial stocks.
Several government-owned financials, including Citigroup (C), experiencing big gains after Fox Business reported the government’s discussing plans to sell its 27% stake in the bank, perhaps as soon as the next three months. Citi was recently up 6.4% at $3.79. AIG, Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE) also seeing big gains.
The curious trading today largely symbolizes much of the trading experienced since March 2009. The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank to a 12-year low on this day one year ago, as pessimism was running rampant through the market. With the Dow trading around 6500, there was little hope that good times were on the horizon.
Fast forward one year later and investor sentiment has definitely shifted for the better, prompting a 60% rally. While jitters about the recovery’s sustainability still exist, investors for the most part feel much better about the economy’s prospects than they did a year ago.
Posted by Steven Russolillo
on December 14, 2009
- Temporary employment trend marks a welcome sign for the jobs market. “The combination of fewer layoffs and more hiring provides some welcome news – but within the context of two years of job losses,” the Atlanta Fed’s macroblog.
- Did someone break a mirror? Could take almost seven years for the unemployment rate to revert back to 5%, University of Oregon economics professor Mark Thoma writes at MoneyWatch.
- Keep an eye out for percolating commodity prices and what impact they may play concerning Fed’s monetary policy, UC San Diego economics professor James Hamilton writes at Econbrowser.
- Citi repaying TARP is nice. And the focus will be on strong capital ratios once the deal is completed. But the bottom line is Citi still needs to get smaller and more profitable, Reuters blogger Felix Salmon says.
- Exxon’s $31B bet.
- President Obama calls bankers “fat cats” and lashes out at Wall Street over increasing tensions surrounding financial reform. But is Obama merely posturing with rhetoric on bankers? Naked capitalism’s Yves Smith weighs in.
- John Hussman’s at it again, making the case that the S&P 500 is “decidedly speculative” at current levels. And the long-term outcome for risk-taking at these levels will “almost undoubtedly be unrewarding.”
- Real Time Economics gathers some remembrances of economist Paul Samuelson, who passed Sunday. He was 94.
- Will Tiger Woods ever be the same?