Spain could ask for a rescue of its struggling banks this weekend when European finance ministers hold an emergency conference call Saturday to discuss the country’s financial problems, a move that would make it the fourth member of the 17-nation eurozone to seek outside help since the continent’s financial crisis erupted two years ago.
The fact of the matter of the matter is that Facebook shares will almost certainly disappoint investors who participate in the IPO, because the prices being bandied about simply don’t reflect the numerous risks that are also part and parcel of the business. Here are five numbers that highlight some of those significant risks:
Bank fees: Every time you use your Bank of America debit card and don’t pay $5, thank Occupy Wall Street.
Changing the national conversation: Coming out of the summer, the economic debate in Washington was dominated by talk of cutting the deficit — not jobs, not the wealth disparity in America, and certainly not the role of money in politics.
Getting Wall Street’s attention: Perhaps even more impressive is how OWS has seeped into Wall Street’s own conversation. This is partly due to the early attention paid by a few influential financial bloggers, such as bank critic Barry Ritholtz. But bankers were clearly stung by the 1% tag and angered by suggestions they hadn’t earned their bonuses.
If stock market gyrations make you queasy, you may not want to read on.
The Wilshire 5000 Total Market Index has lost $2.8 trillion in value since the stock market slide began on July 22. Some $600 billion of that went up in smoke on Wednesday, when the index and the Dow Jones Industrial Average both dropped about 520 points.
Not surprisingly, the stock market’s wild swings in recent weeks have sent investors and retirees scurrying to their financial advisors for some hand holding. The main message they’re hearing: Stay put.
“Try to take a step back from the day-to-day,” said Chris Philips, senior investment analyst with Vanguard. “Reacting to these ups and downs and sideways swings can actually do more harm than good for most investors.”