Feb. 18, 2015, 2:49 PM
- The financial sector had begun to turn around a dismal start to the year as February brought forth a string of hawkish Fed heads suggesting a June rate hike, but the XLF is lower by 0.8% after just-released FOMC minutes suggest markets and the hawks are getting ahead of themselves. KBE -1.7%, KRE -2%
- The TBTFs: BofA (BAC -2.2%), JPMorgan (JPM -1.4%), Wells Fargo (WFC -1.6%), Ciitgroup (C -0.8%)
- The regionals: Regions Financial (RF -1.6%), KeyCorp (KEY -1.6%), PNC Financial (PNC -1.3%), BB&T (BBT -1.5%), Fifth Third (FITB -1.6%), SunTrust (STI -1.7%), First Niagara (FNFG -2.1%), M&T (MTB -1.9%), U.S. Bancorp (USB -1.3%), First Horizon (FHN -2.7%).
- Online brokerage: Schwab (SCHW -2.3%), E*Trade (ETFC -1.7%), Ameritrade (AMTD -1.1%), Interactive Brokers (IBKR -0.9%).
- Previously: FOMC minutes: June rate hike not a slam dunk yet (Feb. 18)
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, IAI, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, QABA, FINU, KCE, KRU, RWW, KBWR, RYF, KBWC, FINZ, KRS
Feb. 6, 2015, 9:50 AM
- Financials have been mercilessly pounded in 2015 as hopes for higher interest rates looked like they might be dashed yet again, but today's blowout jobs number - firmly putting a June rate hike on the table - has brought in the dip-buyers.
- The major averages are flat, but the XLF is up 1.4%. The Regional Bank ETF (KRE +2%) and the Bank ETF (KBE +2.1%) are doing even better.
- Among the yield-starved banking names: Bank of America (BAC +3.1%), JPMorgan (JPM +2.6%), Citigroup (C +2%), Regions Financial (RF +4%), KeyCorp (KEY +3%), PNC Financial (PNC +2.9%), SunTrust (STI +2.3%), Zions (ZION +3.6%), Synovus (SNV +2.3%).
- Insurers: MetLife (MET +2%), Prudential (PRU +3.2%), Lincoln National (LNC +4.6%). AIG (AIG +1.5%).
- Trust banks: BNY Mellon (BK +2.7%) State Street (STT +1.9%), Northern Trust (NTRS +2.3%).
- Online brokers (currently getting killed on money-market fee rebates): Schwab (SCHW +4.5%), TD Ameritrade (AMTD +3.5%), E*Trade (ETFC +2.1%).
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, KIE, IAT, IAI, SEF, IYG, IAK, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, QABA, FINU, KRU, RWW, KBWR, RYF, KBWP, KBWI, PSCF, FINZ, KRS
Jan. 22, 2015, 12:35 PM
- Mercilessly sold since the year turned, banks are putting in a rare session of outperformance, helped along by some earnings beats from regional lenders and the return of animal spirits in M&A with RBC's purchase of City National (CYN +18.6%) for $5.4B.
- The XLF +1.4% vs. the S&P's 0.6% gain today, and the regional bank ETF (NYSEARCA:KRE) is higher by 3.1%.
- Among today's reporters putting in big gains are KeyCorp (KEY +5.5%), BB&T (BBT +2.4%), and Huntington Bancshares (HBAN +2.6%), though Flagstar Bancorp (FBC -4.8%) missed estimates.
- Others: Regions Financial (RF +3.9%), PNC Financial (PNC +1.6%), Synovus (SNV +3.2%), M&T Bank (MTB +3%), Hudson City (HCBK +3.1%), First Horizon (FHN +2.7%), and First Republic (FRC +4.9%).
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, IAI, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, QABA, FINU, KRU, RWW, KBWR, RYF, PSCF, FINZ, KRS
- Among the TBTFs, Citigroup (C +2.7%) and Bank of America (BAC +2.5%) are leading the way.
Jan. 15, 2015, 3:46 PM
- Oil's plummeting again, but today's weakest sector is the financials (XLF -1%) as Bank of America and Ciitgroup each are punished (down more than 4%) following their Q4 results this morning.
- BofA's and Citi's stories are like that of JPMorgan yesterday - the secular decline in trading revenue, combining with sluggish growth elsewhere, and the continuing wait for higher interest rates to provide better margins.
- Some amount of higher rates had also been priced into the insurers, and they've struggled along with the banks as 2015 has instead brought sharply lower rates (at least at the long end).
- Previously: BofA off 2% after Q4 results (Jan. 15)
- Previously: Citi slips premarket as revenue comes in light (Jan. 15)
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, VFH, IYF, IAI, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, FINU, KCE, RWW, RYF, KBWC, FINZ, KIE, IAK, KBWP, KBWI
Jan. 13, 2015, 10:39 AM
- In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court ruled homeowners need only write a lender - not file a lawsuit - in order to be able to back out of a mortgage under the Truth in Lending Act.
- That law allows consumers to rescind a mortgage for up to three years after it was made if a lender does not notify them of the numerous details about the loan and its accompanying charges.
- Consumer advocates, of course, claim lenders routinely violated the Act in the years prior to the housing crash.
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, VFH, IYF, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, KME, FINU, RWW, RYF, FINZ
Dec. 9, 2014, 8:52 AM
- A check of the other major banks premarket amid a global selloff of some note and BofA's Brian Moynihan's warning about sluggish Q4 trading revenue finds JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) -1.5%, Citigroup (NYSE:C) -1.5%, Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) -1.2%, Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) -1.7%, and Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) -1.5%.
- XLF -1.1%
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, VFH, IYF, IAI, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, FINU, KCE, RWW, RYF, KBWC, FINZ
Dec. 5, 2014, 10:06 AM
- Among those counting on higher interest rates to boost profits are banks, insurers, and online brokers, and all are outliers to the upside in today's session after a strong November jobs report has rate hike expectations on the rise. The XLF is up 1%.
- TBTFs: Bank of America (BAC +2.1%), Citigroup (C +1.8%), JPMorgan (JPM +2.2%), Wells Fargo (WFC +1.2%)
- Regionals (KRE +1.9%): Regions Financial (RF +2.6%), KeyCorp (KEY +2.3%), Huntington (HBAN +1.5%), BB&T (BBT +1.6%), Zions (ZION +4%)
- Custodials: BNY Mellon (BNY), State Street (STT +1.6%), Northern Trust (NTRS +1.8%)
- Life insurers: MetLife (MET +2.1%), Prudential (PRU +2.5%), Lincoln National (LNC +2.3%)
- Online brokers: Schwab (SCHW +3.8%), E*Trade (ETFC +3%), Ameritrade (AMTD +2.7%)
- Previously: Short end of yield curve on the move after jobs number (Dec. 5, 2014)
- Previously: Bonds and dollar higher, gold slumps after strong jobs report (Dec. 5, 2014)
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, KIE, IAT, IAI, SEF, IYG, IAK, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, RKH, QABA, FINU, KRU, RWW, KBWR, RYF, KBWP, KBWI, PSCF, FINZ, KRS
Dec. 1, 2014, 11:40 AM
- A positive macro outlook for the U.S. (especially compared to the rest of the globe) should boost credit demand, says UBS - upgrading U.S. financials (NYSEARCA:XLF) to Overweight - while the start of a new rate-hike cycle next year bodes well for interest margins.
- UBS's three favored U.S. banks are Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Citigroup (NYSE:C), and Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS), but TD Bank (NYSE:TD) also makes the buy list thanks to its large American presence.
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, RKH, QABA, FINU, KRU, RWW, KBWR, RYF, FINZ, KRS
Nov. 21, 2014, 1:08 PM
- "In conversations with investors, skepticism remains high while interest in the group remains low," says UBS strategist Julian Emanuel, quickly making at least a contrarian case for buying the financial sector (NYSEARCA:XLF). In addition to that, Emanuel sees a number of positive catalysts emerging over the next year.
- There's higher interest rates, of course, but also underpinning a strong 2015 will be higher volatility and continued robust M&A action, says Emanuel, noting Q3 earnings for U.S. financials gained 9.4% on 5.6% revenue growth.
- The XLF's gain of 10.8% YTD compares to 13.6% for the S&P 500.
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, VFH, IYF, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, FINU, RWW, RYF, FINZ
Oct. 31, 2014, 10:38 AM
- Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS +4.8%) is the latest to do so, today announcing the setting aside of $640M for potential settlements in the currency-rigging investigations.
- In total, seven major U.S. and European banks have boosted their legal reserves by $6.5B in October. Last night, Citigroup (C +0.4%) was forced to cut its Q3 earnings by $600M amid "rapidly-evolving" probes.
- UBS has put aside the most of any single bank this month - $1.9B. Next in line is Deutsche Bank (DB +0.7%) with $1.1B, and JPMorgan (JPM +1.3%) with $1B. None of the lenders disclosed exactly how much was specifically for foreign exchange, and none have yet been formally accused of wrongdoing.
- Barclays (BCS +5.6%) reserved $800M for FX-related settlements, and Credit Suisse (CS +0.5%) $400M.
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, VFH, IYF, IAI, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, FINU, RWW, RYF, FINZ
Oct. 23, 2014, 4:49 PM
- Not having had the pleasure of being subject to the stress test and CCAR previously, Deutsche Bank's (NYSE:DB) U.S. unit will be a participant next year
- As in prior years, those BHCs with large trading operations - BAC, C, GS, JPM, MS, WFC - will be required to factor in a global market shock as part of their scenarios.
- Those six, plus STT and BK - thanks to their custodial operations - will be required to incorporate a counterparty default scenario.
- Among the items in the severely adverse scenario is the unemployment rate jumping to 10%, a 60% dive in the stock market, and oil jumping to $110 per barrel (how about oil falling to $10 per barrel?).
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, IAI, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, RKH, QABA, FINU, KCE, KRU, KBWR, RWW, RYF, KBWC, FINZ, KRS
Oct. 22, 2014, 10:32 AM
- The MBA index rose 11.6% for the week ended October 17, the largest gain since January as mortgage rates continued to decline - the average 30-year fixed mortgage coming in at 4.1%, the lowest since May 2013.
- Leading the way were refinancings, with that gauge jumping 23.3%, the biggest move since January 2012 (purchase applications fell 4.6%).
- Should the trend continue, the now-lean mortgage operations at places like Wells Fargo (WFC +0.2%), JPMorgan (JPM +0.2%), and Bank of America (BAC +0.2%), among others, should provide a nice boost to Q4 results.
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, RKH, QABA, FINU, KRU, KBWR, RWW, RYF, FINZ, KRS
Oct. 17, 2014, 12:20 PM
- One of the key issues serving as a road block to mortgage lending is banker fear over having any loans put back to them by the GSEs at any time - even years down the road - for any number of reasons.
- This concern was voiced most pointedly in the late summer by Wells Fargo (WFC +1.2%) CEO John Stumpf in the kind of call-out of regulators you don't often hear from corporate leaders.
- The WSJ is now reporting that Fannie (OTCQB:FNMA +5.9%), Freddie (OTCQB:FMCC +7.3%), their regulators, and banks are near a deal in which the lenders could feel protected enough to begin granting mortgages to those without perfect credit and employment histories.
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, VFH, IYF, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, FINU, RWW, RYF, FINZ
Oct. 15, 2014, 10:49 AM
- Bank earnings models will no doubt need to be tweaked as the sure thing of higher rates becomes somewhat less sure, with the 10-year U.S. Treasury yield plunging all the way down to 2%, and 30-day Fed Funds futures - just weeks ago pricing in 100% chance of a rate hike by June 2015 - now sees no move until December 2015.
- The XLF is lower by 1.9% and the Regional Banking ETF (NYSEARCA:KRE) is down 2.1% (the S&P 500 is off a mere 1.1%). Among individual names, KeyCorp (KEY -6.4%), First Bancorp (FBP -6.4%), Regions Financial (RF -4%), U.S. Bancorp (USB -2.2%), Fifth Third (FITB -2.6%), Bank of America (BAC -4%), Citigroup (C -3.3%), JPMorgan (JPM -2.8%), Wells Fargo (WFC -1.9%).
- Financial ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, RKH, QABA, FINU, KRU, RWW, KBWR, RYF, FINZ, KRS
- Life insurers were also waiting on higher rates and they're slipping more than the averages as well. MetLife (MET -3.7%), Prudential (PRU -2.9%), Manulife (MFC -3.5%) Sun Life (SLF -3.4%), Lincoln Financial (LNC -3.9%).
- Insurance ETFs: KIE, IAK, KBWP, KBWI
- Previously: BofA call: Assumption about higher rates not so sure anymore
Oct. 14, 2014, 12:21 PM
- Amid a trio of Q3 earnings reports - JPMorgan, Citigroup, and Wells Fargo - the Financial Sector Select SPDR (XLF +1%) is one of the day's most-traded ETFs, with 26.4M shares trading hands thus far. The fund is also strongly higher despite misses at JPMorgan and Wells Fargo (both of those names are lower). Citigroup, however, is ahead by 2.3%.
- Also on the move are the Vanguard Financial Index (VFH +1.3%) and the iShares U.S. Financials ETFS (IYF +1.2%)
- Broad fin'l sector ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, VFH, IYF, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, FINU, RWW, RYF, FINZ
Oct. 13, 2014, 8:00 AM
- When you're a hammer, everything looks like a nail. In what smells like another foray by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, with other agencies possibly joining in, banks are reportedly under investigation for lending ... this time for automobiles.
- Amid an otherwise sluggish loan market - especially for mortgages - auto lending has experienced rapid growth over the past few years, particularly subprime lending, and those in that business - Santander Consumer being one - are already under examination by the CFPB.
- At issue for banks is not just the direct auto loans they're making, but the financing they're providing to shops like Santander Consumer.
- Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) is the largest U.S. auto lender, with $50.8B in loans outstanding at the end of last year, roughly $15B of which was subprime. In addition, the bank has extended since 2011 more than $1.5B of credit lines to the country's largest subprime lenders. Other sizable players include Capital One (NYSE:COF) and JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM).
- "Banks are making a lot of money off these (auto) loans in many different ways," says the head of a consumer advocate group. Isn't that what they're supposed to do?
- "The subprime auto sector appears too small to present a systemic risk," says BAML's Michael Hanson.
- ETFs: XLF, FAS, FAZ, UYG, KRE, VFH, KBE, IYF, IAT, SEF, IYG, FXO, FNCL, KBWB, RKH, QABA, FINU, KRU, KBWR, RWW, RYF, KRS, FINZ
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