Citigroup Inc., Bank of America Corp. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. led financial shares to their worst week since 2002 after Wachovia Corp. said loan defaults reduced profit. The banks themselves received little sorrow from average customers. Increased ATM fees, insufficient funds fees and lower interest rates caused very few to feel sorry for the banks. Investors and shareholders saw thing differently.
The DOW closed down 366.94 today, down for most of the week, and showing the worst 2007 performance since July. Merrill Lynch & Co., the biggest U.S. brokerage, tumbled $3.81, or 5.4 percent, to $66.26. Morgan Stanley, the second- biggest U.S. investment bank, slid $3.45, or 5.3 percent, to $61.95. Goldman Sachs Group Inc., the most profitable securities firm, slid $10.16, or 4.5 percent, to $217.69.
Profit at the five biggest U.S. banks totaled $18.7 billion for the quarter, the lowest in almost four years, as demand for securities linked to mortgages and leveraged loans dried up.
Countrywide Financial Corp., the second-worst performer in the S&P 500 this year, lost $1.28 to $15.23, the lowest since April 2003.