Focus Morningstar Financial Services Index ETFNYSE
FFL is defunct since August 17, 2012. Closed due to lack of investor interest
  • Aug. 21, 2012, 9:18 AM
    His tail between his legs at the moment, Jamie Dimon is no longer the banker who can stand up (remember this tantrum) against the regulatory onslaught faced by the industry. "The government is piling on the banks," says a fund manager. "Somebody has to fight the damn thing."
    | Aug. 21, 2012, 9:18 AM | 3 Comments
  • Aug. 20, 2012, 9:52 AM
    "What we talk about is you play anything with mortgage banking," says FBR's Paul Miller, because it's the only area where banks can show any sort of growth. There remains more than 20M Fannie and Freddie loans with a rate above 5%. We're in HARP 2.0 now, and there will be HARP 3.0 and HARP 4.0 before it ends, he says.
    | Aug. 20, 2012, 9:52 AM | 3 Comments
  • Jul. 31, 2012, 1:22 PM

    Negative interest rates are wonderful, writes Izabella Kaminska, if the objective is to kill off banks and insurers. Earnings are already under enough pressure and flat/inverted curves at the short end are hurting even more. Add this to the growing list of unintended consequences of central bank actions, and as a caution to the Fed as it debates cutting deposit rates to zero.

    | Jul. 31, 2012, 1:22 PM
  • Jul. 19, 2012, 1:03 PM

    The 30 bp decline in Bank of America's (BAC) net interest margin represents $1.27B in lost quarterly earnings power, says Josh Steiner, a "hit (that) is recurring, not one time." This deterioration in bank's underlying business may help explain the sharp decline in the stock (-4% today,  -4.8% yesterday) despite a headline beat on earnings thanks to a large reserve release.

    | Jul. 19, 2012, 1:03 PM | 8 Comments
  • Jul. 17, 2012, 7:42 AM

    Risk premiums for bank debt are "highly unlikely to ever return to their former levels," according to a report from Moody's, thanks to baggage still carried from the financial crisis. "This is a terrible time to be a bank, but it may be a wonderful time to start a bank," says Jason Trennert, commenting on Goldman's beefing-up of its in-house bank.

    | Jul. 17, 2012, 7:42 AM | 2 Comments
  • Jul. 13, 2012, 4:02 AM
    Twelve global banks publicly linked to the Libor scandal face as much as $22B in combined regulatory penalties and damages to investors and counterparties, according to admittedly "crude" Morgan Stanley estimates. The calculation excludes the potential fallout from ongoing U.S. and EU cartel investigations, which could result in multibillion-dollar fines.
    | Jul. 13, 2012, 4:02 AM | 32 Comments
  • Jul. 11, 2012, 7:40 AM

    More on the expected new debit-card processing rule: Regions Financial (RF) faces the biggest (4%) hit as a percentage of earnings. Other banks seeing revenue losses: JPM, WFC, HBAN, MTB, STI.

    | Jul. 11, 2012, 7:40 AM | 3 Comments
  • Jul. 5, 2012, 3:02 PM

    The flow of mortgage putback requests from Frannie to the banks shows no sign of slowing, says Fitch, and it's likely to weigh on lenders' financial results. Previously, claim activity had focused on the TBTFs, but now, says Fitch, it's the regionals at risk (PNC, FHN, and STI have all boosted reserves due to claims recently).

    | Jul. 5, 2012, 3:02 PM | 2 Comments
  • Jul. 5, 2012, 2:58 AM

    Bank shareholders have no idea what kind of liability they're facing from the Libor probe. Barclays, for example, dropped 16% the day after being blindsided by a $451.4M regulatory fine. More than a dozen banks are being probed, are providing minimal disclosures and are probably failing to put enough funds in reserve for potential fines.

    | Jul. 5, 2012, 2:58 AM | 5 Comments
  • Jun. 29, 2012, 7:41 AM

    Global investment banks' fee income fell 25% to $14B in Q2, according to Reuters data, with YTD fees of $32B off 25% from 2011. The numbers, along with trading revenues maybe off 40%, suggest Q2 earnings may not look so hot. Of course by now, none of this can be considered "new" news (see also) - perhaps, it's baked into stock prices.

    | Jun. 29, 2012, 7:41 AM | 1 Comment
  • Jun. 28, 2012, 6:25 AM

    It's setting up to be a bad morning for financials. Barclays (BCS) -8.6% premarket as pressure grows for Diamond to quit, and JPMorgan (JPM) -5.2% on reports its trading loss could hit $9B. Perhaps in sympathy, other financial names are also dropping, outpacing the pullback by S&P futures: BAC -1.5%, MS -1.15%, C -1%, WFC -1%.

    | Jun. 28, 2012, 6:25 AM | 11 Comments
  • Jun. 26, 2012, 8:05 AM
    Forget the politics, says former Morgan Stanley CEO Phil Purcell, the best reason to break up the big banks is to benefit their shareholders. "Breaking these companies into separate businesses would double to triple the shareholder value of each institution." Strong words from a man who spent his career putting these behemoths together.
    | Jun. 26, 2012, 8:05 AM | 5 Comments
  • Jun. 21, 2012, 8:24 AM

    A Moody's one-notch downgrade of the major banks for all but Morgan Stanley is priced in, says Mike Mayo. The surprise will be if a lender other than MS gets cut more than one notch, or if another ratings agency quickly follows. In any case, the move further cements his idea of Wells Fargo (WFC) as the big bank to own if you have to. (action may be imminent)

    | Jun. 21, 2012, 8:24 AM
  • Jun. 21, 2012, 8:04 AM
    The long-awaited downgrades of big U.S. and U.K. banks from Moody's could come after the U.S. close tonight, reports Sky News' Mark Kleinman. Morgan Stanley (MS) is an especially interested party (I, II)
    | Jun. 21, 2012, 8:04 AM | 12 Comments
  • Jun. 19, 2012, 12:36 PM

    Concerned banks are cutting back on credit approvals first and asking questions later, the FHFA is set to detail exactly what mortgage flaws would trigger a putback request. The story dovetails with an earlier one about the FOMC wondering what good are low interest rates if only a sliver of the population can take advantage? A trend is officially underway.

    | Jun. 19, 2012, 12:36 PM | 14 Comments
  • Jun. 16, 2012, 12:00 PM
    Finally viewing with alarm bank retrenchment across the globe, regulators are set to ease stringent new capital rules - known as Basel III - set to begin kicking in in 2013. China has already postponed its tough new rules, and the U.K. "capitulation" this week suggests that country's regulators have seen the light.
    | Jun. 16, 2012, 12:00 PM | 75 Comments
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