A government bailout of Citigroup (C) caused stocks to rally this morning, giving a bit of life to financial exchange traded funds (ETFs). The major indexes have been up and the hope is that this will also help alleviate some of the troubles within the housing sector.
Investors are feeling a bit empowered after the $20 billion shot in Citigroup’s arm and the $306 billion guarantee for risky assets, reports Tim Paradis for Associated Press. Had Citigroup’s share price remained below the key $5 mark, it could have led to a new wave of selling.
Obama has also chosen his financial team and given some hope to the markets, calling in another economic stimulus.
His plan targets saving or creating 2.5 million jobs during the next two years. Any plan is expected to exceed the $175 billion Obama proposed during the campaign.
- iShares Dow Jones U.S. Financial Sector Index Fund (IYF): down 61.7% year-to-date; Citigroup is 4.8%
- Vanguard Financials (VFH): down 60.8% year-to-date; Citigroup 5.1%
On the home front, the nationwide sales of homes fell 3.1%, a number larger than anticipated. The economy and its weakness has made borrowers wary, despite prices falling to their lowest level in five years.
Sales of existing homes fell 3.1% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.98 million units in October, from a downwardly revised pace of 5.14 million in September, reports Alan Zibel for Associated Press. Sales in the Western region of the nation remain up, as buyers in Las Vegas and Orange County are buying distressed properties at bargain prices.
Nationwide, estimates are that sales of distressed properties made up 45% of all property sales in October.
- iShares Dow Jones Cohen and Steers Realty Majors Index Fund (ICF): down 59.4% year-to-date
- SPDR DJ Wilshire REIT (RWR): down 57.7% year-to-date
The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.