The sale in September of an initial 6 percent stake inLloyds Banking Group, an R.B.S. rival that also had to be bailed out by the government in 2008, added pressure on R.B.S.’s new chief executive to speed up the turnaround plan.
In a statement, Mr. Osborne welcomed the move, saying it allowed R.B.S. to “deal decisively with the problems of the past by separating out the good from the bad, and putting the bad loans in a bad bank.” He also said that “the bad bank should be an internal one, funded by R.B.S., rather than an external one funded by the taxpayer.”
The “actions should create a more resilient institution that is better able to support the real economy without any expectation of further government support,” the Bank of England said in a statement.
R.B.S. also said Friday that its net loss for the three months until the end of September was £828 million, compared with a loss of £1.4 billion in the same period a year earlier. The results fell short of some analyst expectations, which predicted the bank would return to profit in the period. Impairment losses in the quarter were almost unchanged at £1.17 billion.
Mr. McEwan pledged to win back customer trust, restore pride in the organization among employees and work to repay the government for the bailout. Mr. McEwan, the former head of R.B.S.’s retail banking business in Britain, who joined R.B.S. just a little over a year ago, is expected to focus on retail and commercial banking at home, putting into question the future for the bank’s investment banking operation and units abroad.
R.B.S. said it planned to sell an initial stake in Citizens, the American lender it bought in 1988, in an initial public offering in the second half of next year. That is almost a year earlier than originally planned. R.B.S. said it would sell the rest of Citizens by the end of 2016.
Since the financial crisis began, the Royal Bank of Scotland has jettisoned around £900 billion, or $1.4 trillion, worth of assets from its balance sheet, and eliminated about 40,000 jobs in a bid to bolster profitability. The bank, based in Edinburgh, improved its capital cushion and scaled back its investment banking operation.
But bad loans from its banking unit in Ireland continue to weigh on performance, and a slow economic recovery made any sale of distressed real estate assets difficult. R.B.S. also had to set aside more than £2 billion to compensate clients who purchased insurance that they could not use or did not need.
The government’s partial closing prompted Americans to turn more pessimistic about the economy, whose recovery continues to be uneven. Disappointing gains in employment and the prospect of a protracted budget battle into 2014 raises the risk that consumer spending will cool as the holiday-shopping season approaches.
“This political uncertainty is going to slow any momentum we’ve had in the past few months,” said Millan Mulraine, director of U.S. rates research at TD Securities USA LLC in New York, who projected the sentiment index would drop to 73. “If we come into December without any progress on a funding bill, consumers will start sitting on their hands and that will mean a slower rebound in spending.”
Estimates of the 52 economists surveyed ranged from 71 to 78. The index averaged 89 in the five years prior to the recession that began in December 2007, and 64.2 during the 18-month slump that ended in June 2009.
Stocks were little changed as better-than-projected revenue from Amazon.com Inc. and Microsoft Corp. offset the drop in sentiment. The S&P 500 rose less than 0.1 percent to 1,753.47 at 10:35 a.m. in New York.
“Our results point to the increased consistency, strength and balance we are deriving from our business model,” Gorman said in a statement. “Our strategy to combine a world class investment bank with the stability of the largest U.S. wealth management franchise and strong investment management is enabling us to deliver exceptional advice and execution for our clients as well as stronger returns for our shareholders.”
Total TOT +0.83% net revenue at Morgan Stanley increased by 50% to $7.9 billion in the third quarter. That is a sharp contrast compared to Goldman Sachs, which posted $6.72 billion of net revenue in the third quarter, down 20% from the third quarter of 2012. Goldman makes its living trading fixed income, currency and commodities, and revenues generated by those trading activities were hammered in the third quarter, down 44% compared to the third quarter of 2012.
So while Goldman proves that it’s vulnerable and Jamie Dimon is under siege at JPMorgan Chase, which is negotiating monster settlements with the Department of Justice and setting aside $28 billion in litigation reserves, things are pretty good at Morgan Stanley. Morgan Stanley also had problems in its fixed income trading business, which was down 43% with revenue of $835 million, but the weakness was offset by strong performance in other areas like equity, sales and trading.
Shares of Morgan Stanley were poised to open nearly 3% higher in Friday morning trading. The stock is already up some 50% in 2013, compared to a 20% rise in shares of Goldman Sachs.
President Obama will meet with top House Republicans at the White House Thursday afternoon to seek a path beyond a confrontation that has left the government shuttered for close to two weeks.
House Republican leaders appear to be ready toadvance a short-term debt limit increase that would prevent the first default on U.S. debt next week.
The Dow Jones industrial average was up about 275 points, or 1.9%, in afternoon trading. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index gained 2% and the Nasdaq composite index skyrocketed 2.2%.
All major U.S. averages have taken a beating this month as a partial shutdown of the U.S. government dragged on and the risk of a possible default on its debt increased.
“I think investors are facing what has become an all too familiar but nevertheless difficult task of correctly pricing in the risk of the U.S. reaching its debt ceiling,” said Ric Spooner, chief of CMC Markets in Sydney.
On Thursday, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew urged Congress to raise the government’s borrowing limit before the current cap is reached on Oct. 17, warning that a Republican idea to prioritize payments with cash on hand could cause “irrevocable damage” to the U.S. economy.
On Wednesday, Fidelity Investments, the nation’s largest money market fund manager, said it had sold all of its short-term U.S. government debt in an effort to limit money market investors’ exposure to a potential default.
FIDELITY: Sheds government bonds
There were hopeful signs in the market for short-term U.S. government debt. The yield on the one-month Treasury bill dropped to 0.23% from 0.27% late Wednesday.
The yield had spiked from near zero at the beginning of the month to as high as 0.35% Tuesday as investors dumped the bills out of concern that the government might not be able to pay them back when they’re due. Investors demand higher yields when they perceive debt as being risky.
We buy and patiently harvest a broadly diversified portfolio of undervalued stocks to be held for their long-term appreciation potential. Twenty words encompassing 137 characters.
If we had a Twitter account, we could actually fit our entire investment strategy into just one Tweet! Of course, these days, many investors might lose interest by word 10, as attention spans have shortened dramatically given the exponential growth of financial information available via mouse-click. Alas, the byproduct of so much readily available content is that stories must often make outlandish claims to rise above the din. Few seem interested in learning about disciplined investment approaches that have served their long-term followers well, but should a piece offer a Dow 36,000 or Dow 3,600 headline, or perhaps mention a well-known celebrity, folks may take notice.
For example, it was probably not a surprise that the largest initial audience for one of these blog posts was when I discussed the apparent discovery of the equity market by actress Mila Kunis back on March 21, 2013. So when my editors at Forbes understandably decided to insert “Bullish on Stocks” into my original title, “Kudos To Kunis: Mila Knows Of What She Speaks,” shortly after the post went live, it became obvious that the fast and furious clicks had come from the masses who had not realized the missive pertained to investing.
WASHINGTON, Sept 27 (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Housing Administration said on Friday it will draw $1.7 billion in cash from the U.S. Treasury to help cover losses from troubled loans, marking the first time in its 79-year history that it has needed aid.
The agency, which offers mortgage lenders guarantees against homeowner defaults, does not have enough cash to cover projected losses on the loans it backs, senior Obama administration officials said. They said the FHA needs the subsidy to shore up its insurance fund by the end of its budget year on Monday in order to maintain a required capital cushion.
While the FHA had been expected to draw from the Treasury, the cash infusion, which Republicans have dubbed a bailout, will heighten the political tension over the government’s pervasive role in the mortgage market.
Taxpayers have already propped up mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to the tune of $187.5 billion, although those government-controlled companies are now profitable and will have returned $146 billion in dividends to the Treasury by the end of the month for the taxpayer stake.
Including Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, federal housing agencies support about nine in 10 new U.S. mortgages.
“As expected, we will be required to take a transfer in order for us to close our financial statement,” a senior administration official told reporters. “It isn’t a reflection of the current performance of our portfolio. There’s been a significant improvement.”
The cash infusion marks what could be considered a book end to the 2007-2009 financial crisis, which was sparked by a burst U.S. housing bubble that sent home prices tumbling.
White House officials projected in April that the FHA would face a shortfall of $943 million in the fiscal year that is drawing to a close, and some analysts predicted an improving housing market might allow it to avoid tapping what is essentially a credit line it has with Treasury.
The FHA said it has more than $30 billion in cash and investments on hand to pay potential claims, but that it does not have enough to meet a legally required 2 percent capital ratio, which is a measure of its ability to withstand losses.
ed Bank of St. Louis President James Bullard, a voter on policy this year who has backed the bond buying, said a small tapering of bond buying is possible next month after the Fed made a close call this week in deciding not to slow purchases. The Federal Open Market Committee said it wants more evidence of an economic recovery before paring its $85 billion-a-month bond-buying program.
“It’s probably a little confusing to the market what’s coming out of the Fed,” John Kvantas, a San Antonio, Texas-basedexecutive director who helps manage more than $16 billion at USAA Investments, said in a phone interview. “Maybe the Fed is trying to send a message that ‘yeah we didn’t taper, but it doesn’t mean we will never taper and maybe actually will taper still quite soon.’”
The S&P 500 (SPX) has rallied 1.9 percent this week, rebounding from its worst month since May 2012, after the central bank unexpectedly refrained from reducing monetary stimulus. The stimulus helped boost the equity index as much as 155 percent higher since March 2009. The S&P 500 and theDow Jones Industrial Average (INDU) reached record highs on Sept. 18 after the Fed’s announcement.
Bullard will speak on the economy and monetary policy at a New York Association for Business Economic lunch today. Kansas City Fed President Esther George and Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota will separately give speeches. George dissented for the sixth FOMC meeting in a row this week, repeating that the bank risks creating financial imbalances. Policy makers meet Oct. 29-30.
“Weaker data came in,” Bullard said on Bloomberg Television’s “Bloomberg Surveillance” withTom Keene and Michael McKee. “That was a borderline decision,” and “the committee came down on the side of, ‘Let’s wait.’” With inflation low, Bullard said, “we can afford to be patient.”
While the discount carrier believed the glitch was resolved by 10:30 a.m. ET, it warned passengers to expect delays throughout the day deriving from the issue.
“Our teams are bringing systems back online, and will resume full operations as quickly as possible,” the company tweeted on its official account. “Expect delays today & check [flight] status.”
Glitches like the one JetBlue experienced have been behind a number of delayed and canceled flights for other carriers in the past. In April, American Airlines had to cancel hundreds of flights due to a system outage in its reservations and booking tool that lasted five hours.
It seems certain connecting flights scheduled to depart after 10 a.m. ET are delayed, according to JetBlue’s flight tracker. Unlike the AMR issue from earlier this year, the JetBlue glitch appeared to affect just dozens — rather than hundreds — of flights.
Jet Blue would not say what caused the glitch outside of calling it an “IT system outage” and reporting “connectivity issues.” It is encouraging passengers to check their flight status before arriving at the airport at www2.jetblue.com/flightstatus.
The recall comes about a week after the company first started asking retailers to pull the products from shelves, saying some cups were “swelling and bloating.” Chobani had previously said it wasn’t issuing a formal recall.
But the Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday that it was in talks with the company about the matter.
Chobani said that most of the affected products have already been pulled from shelves. The company, based in New Berlin, N.Y., said the affected products came from its Idaho facility and represents less than 5 percent of its total production.
The containers are marked with the code 16-012 and expiration dates Sept. 11 to Oct. 7.
In an interview, Chobani CEO Hamid Ulukaya said it was the company’s decision to move to a recall, not the FDA’s. He said the problem was caused by a type of mold that is commonly found in dairy environments. The issue has been “totally fixed,” he said, noting that the mold became a problem because Chobani doesn’t use preservatives in its products.
Ulukaya did not say exactly how many reports of illnesses the company received, but said it was not in the hundreds or thousands.
“Everybody in the company took this hard,” Ulukaya said. “It shook us up.”
This week, the company was responding online to customers who were complaining about their yogurt. One person said her yogurt was “unnervingly fizzy” and another said it tasted like “wine.”
LONDON–U.K. banks could boost lending to households and businesses by an extra GBP90 billion under a plan announced by Bank of England Governor Mark Carney on Wednesday to help firm up the country’s economic recovery.
Healthy banks will be allowed to lower their reserves of liquid assets like cash and bonds, giving them leeway in meeting new internationally agreed standards.
Mr. Carney said U.K. banks are on their way to crossing a “threshold to a healthy banking system” by meeting a new requirement to hold at least 7% in equity against their risk-adjusted assets. He said banks are now moving into a position to safely reduce the liquid assets they keep on hand in case their usual sources of funding dry up, and could instead use the money to make loans.
“The effect will be to lower total required holdings by GBP90 billion, once all eight major banks and building societies meet the capital threshold. That will help to underpin the supply of credit, since every pound currently held in liquid assets is a pound that could be lent to the real economy,” Mr. Carney said.
The U.K. economy is about 3% smaller than it was in 2008. Net lending by U.K. banks has also shrunk in the period, stirring a debate over whether banks are doing enough to support the economy.
The Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee, a panel charged with protecting the resilience of the U.K. financial system, said in June that banks’ improved health had given them scope to cut their holdings of liquid assets. It said nearly all the major U.K. banks were already holding higher reserves than those required under new international rules known as Basel III.
The Prudential Regulation Authority, the bank supervision arm within the Bank of England, on Wednesday said banks meeting minimum capital requirements will be able to cut their liquidity reserves to 80% of the Basel III “liquidity coverage ratio.” That standard, which will become legally binding across the European Union in 2018, requires banks to hold sufficient liquid assets to cover cash outflows in stressed market conditions.