February 20, 2009 / 4:15 PM / 10 years ago

STOCKS NEWS US-Markets fall on bank uncertainty, Citigroup tanks

Stocks on the move [HOT-RTRS] Real-Time Equity news [U E]

U.S. stock market report [.N] 1102 ET 20Feb2009-Markets fall on bank uncertainty, Citigroup tanks ———————————————————————————————————————

Major U.S. indexes fell on Friday, with the Dow falling to its lowest in more than six years as investors continued to fret about the state of the banking sector. Citigroup (C.N) and Bank of America (BAC.N) plummeted on the fear that they would be nationalized.

The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI fell 1.3 percent to 7,368.38 while the S&P 500 .SPX lost 1.4 percent to 768.36 and the Nasdaq .IXIC was off 0.4 percent to 1,436.96.

Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net 1049 ET 20Feb2009-J.C. Penney up modestly after results, peers fall ———————————————————————————————————————

Shares of department stores were down modestly on Friday, after J.C. Penney (JCP.N) reported fourth-quarter earnings that beat expectations but forecast a loss in its first quarter that was wider than expected. The company said that many customers would be holding off on shopping as the recession weighs on consumer spending. [ID:nN20525396]

The S&P Department Store Sub-Industry Index .GSPRETD was down 0.5 percent to 77.46 while J.C. Penney rose 0.5 percent to $15. J.C. Penney was the only department store in positive territory on Friday.

Among other companies in the sector, Nordstrom (JWN.N) fell 0.8 percent to $11.74 while Kohl’s (KSS.N) lost 0.6 percent to $34.50, Macy’s (M.N) was off 3.1 percent to $7.42 and Sears Holding SHLD.O fell 0.9 percent to $37.14.

Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net 1034 ET 20Feb2009-S&P Equity slashes price target on Citigroup ———————————————————————————————————————

S&P Equity Research on Friday slashed its price target on Citigroup (C.N), dropping it to $3 from $5. It rates the bank as hold.

The firm cut its target on the Dow component to account for possible further markdowns on its securities, it said, adding that a nationalization of the bank was a solution of last resort, barring a major loss of deposits. [ID:nWNAB5179]

Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net 1025 ET 20Feb2009-Wall Street cuts losses on strength in tech ———————————————————————————————————————

Major U.S. indexes cut their losses on Friday, though sentiment over the financial sector continued to weigh on investors, as they feared that such major banks as Citigroup (C.N) and Bank of America (BAC.N) would be nationalized. Strength in the market came on chipmakers and telecommunication stocks. [ID:nN20247761]

The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI fell 1.1 percent to 7,389.25 while the S&P 500 .SPX lost 1.1 percent to 770.78 and the Nasdaq .IXIC was off 0.3 percent to 1,438.31.

Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net 1021 ET 20Feb2009-DA Davidson: stimulus doesn’t give long-term help ———————————————————————————————————————

DA Davidson on Friday said that while the recently-signed government stimulus package does offer “some social merit and large amounts of immediate government spending,” it appeared “to fall far short of offering sound long-term economic help.”

Based on market reaction, Wall Street feels that the plan, along with the government’s Housing Financial Stability Plan, “appear[s] to fall far short of addressing the real problems facing our national economy, primarily consumer deleveraging, falling housing prices and huge unsold home inventories, or the shaky foundation of the banking system,” it wrote

Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net 1011 ET 20Feb2009-BMO sees Q1 profit for PrivateBancorp ———————————————————————————————————————

BMO Capital Markets on Friday forecast a first-quarter profit for PrivateBancorp PVTB.O, helped by strong loan growth, margin expansion and positive operating leverage.

The firm also narrowed its 2009 loss estimate for the regional bank, seeing a lower provision expense after it aggressively charged off loans in its fourth quarter.

PrivateBancorp posted a loss in its fourth quarter. [ID:nBNG349896]

The stock slid 4.2 percent to $11.43 on a day of broad weakness for bank stocks.

Reuters Messaging: ryan.vlastelica.reuters.com@reuters.net

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