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  • Talk of US Debt Default Unsettles Markets - 7 October 2013
  • Global markets continue to be affected by the grim possibility that the US government's partial shutdown could result in the world’s largest economy defaulting on its debt. Japan's Nikkei index dropped by more than 1 percent to 13,853.32 on Monday, with the Hang Seng index of Hong Kong falling 0.7 percent to 22,973.95 and India’s BSE 30 losing 0.5 percent to close at 19,808.71. Markets were closed for a public holiday on mainland China. Following Friday's modest gains, markets slumped ahead of the opening bell on Wall Street on Monday. The Dow Jones industrial average index futures dropped 0.8 percent, with the Nasdaq index futures falling 0.9 percent and Standard & Poor's 500 index futures slumping 1 percent. As the impasse between Republicans and the White House continues, investor anxiety has risen. The news that there would not be a vote on a straightforward bill to grant the government borrowing authority before the October 17 deadline has shaken markets as is evident in major indexes.

  • Financial Crisis Accountability on the Cards - 22 August 2013
  • The recently released results of the review of the 2008 financial crisis by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has revealed that federal and state insurance regulators helped to minimize the economic turmoil and maintain general stability in the market. The GAO found that, with a few exceptions, the effects of the 2008 financial crisis on policyholders and insurers were limited. A coalition of state regulators under the banner of the National Association of Insurance Commissions took action during the crisis by insisting on detailed reports from insurers, as well as altering reporting rules and criteria for determining the risk factor of securities.

  • Investor Demand High for GM IPO - 18 November 2010
  • Since General Motors put word out that it was planning an initial public offering (IPO) the response from eager investors has resulted in a revision of the original IPO figure and, starting Thursday November 18, GM will be offering $4.6 billion worth of preferred shares, as well as 478 million common shares which should fetch between $32 and $33 per share. This move will go down in US stock market history as the largest IPO on record, even if preferred shares are taken out of the equation.

  • Bank Credit Rating Cuts Ahead of Regulator Overhaul - 18 June 2009
  • Fears that the recession may drag on longer than anticipated, made investors nervous and impacted negatively on Wall Street at the beginning of the week. A tech rally on Wednesday boosted the Nasdaq composite index with a gain of 0.7 percent. However, news of credit rating cuts for US banks caused financials to slide, dragging the Dow Jones industrial average with it, ending the day with a 0.1 percent loss, with a similar loss being recorded by the Standard & Poor's 500.

  • Wall Street Slumps on Fed’s Gloomy Forecasts - 21 may 2009
  • Wednesday on Wall Street was off to a promising start as stocks surged in response to the news that Bank of America"s sale of 1.25 billion shares of stock had raised $13.47 billion, fueling investor hopes that the financial sector is in the process of stabilizing. The results of the government's bank stress test revealed that Bank of America would need $33.9 billion to protect it against losses in the event of the economy worsening. While $13.47 billion is far short of the stress test amount, the bank’s ability to raise that amount of cash nevertheless puts it on a steadier footing to cope with the rising rate of consumers defaulting on loan payments.

  • Wall Street Rally Over As GM & Chrylser Cut Dealerships - 18 may 2009
  • By Wednesday of last week, when markets took a dive on Wall Street following the worse-than-expected retail sales results for April, as well as dismal results on housing and employment, there was still some optimism that Thursday and Friday could possibly see markets recoup their losses and extend the two month rally - but this was not to be. As more bad news filtered through to investors, Friday was somewhat of a roller coaster ride, ending the week with all three major indexes – the Dow Jones Industrial Average, Standard & Poor’s 500 and Nasdaq Composite - declining for the first time in ten weeks.

  • Markets Absorb “Stress Test” Results and Remain Optimistic - 11 may 2009
  • Despite the fact that the "stress test" results performed on nineteen U.S. banks revealed that ten of these will need substantial government assistance, Wall Street ended last week on a high, with Nasdaq advancing for nine weeks in a row, and the Dow and S&P 500 both rising for eight out of the past nine weeks. The government report that employers cut fewer jobs than was expected during the month of April also contributed to a glass-half-full mindset among investors and thereby boosting the market. Analysts agree that stock market traders are becoming so accustomed to bad news that when the bad news is not as bad as anticipated, it is perceived as "good" news, or at the very least "less worse" news. With U.S. markets showing a strong likelihood of advancing for a tenth week, it appears that nervous investors are overcoming their anxiety and are keen to get back into the market before they miss out.


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