Meredith Whitney: The $360bn analyst

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by ASusilovic, Jan 11, 2008.

  1. The words of one woman were enough to knock fragile stock markets into a freefall not seen since the advent of the sub-prime crisis in August, after a pessimistic report on Citigroup's future sparked a chain reaction of panic selling.

    The report of Meredith Whitney, a financial services analyst from CIBC World Market, a subsidiary of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, led to about $369 billion (£177 billion) being wiped off the US stock market value by the end of yesterday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid more than 360 points, or 2.6 per cent.

    In London, the FTSE lost £32 billion, dropping 65 points. Today another £15.5 billion has been lost, bringing the total to £47 billion. Indications are that the FTSE will make some recovery in afternoon trading.

    Ms Whitney's report caused Citibank to lose more than $15 billion of market capitalisation, with its stock plunging more than 7 per cent in the first half hour of trading. In her report, Ms Whitney said Citigroup would need to cut its dividend or sell assets to avert what she said was a $30 billion capital shortfall. It was the biggest stumble for Citibank’s shares since September 2002.

    “No one had the moxie to put in print what I put in print,” Ms Whitney said.

    Hats off, Meredith ! As newspaper reports suggesting Citi expected to consider slashing its dividend in half in a move that would save it around $2.5 billion a year...