Thursday's Financial Winners & Losers
Updated from 2:45 p.m. EDT with new stock prices
Financial stocks pressed lower Thursday as a surprise September rise in new-home sales, per the Census Bureau, was countered by a congressional report that forecasted some 2 million subprime mortgage foreclosures by the end of 2008.
Among individual names, Triad Guaranty (TGIC) plummeted 26.61% to $6.04 after "rapid deterioration of the housing markets" helped pressure a loss of $31.8 million, or $2.13 a share, to reverse a year-ago profit.
Fellow mortgage insurers Radian (RDN) and MGIC Investment (MTG) were each off sharply as well, as MGIC slashed its dividend by 90% to 0.025 a share. Radian tumbled 23.62% to $9.99; MGIC sank 9.32% to $17.90.Investment manager W.P. Stewart (WPL) outright suspended its 15-cent quarterly dividend, kicking shares down 18.81% to $6.26. WellCare (WCG), a health insurer and managed-care provider, dove 62.95% to $42.67 following a government raid of its offices. Meanwhile, Merrill Lynch (MER) was battered by downgrades from UBS, Wachovia and Bernstein on the heels of yesterday's release of dismal financials. Goldman Sachs also slashed 2007 earnings estimates by around 79%. Merrill shares shed $2.32, or 3.67%, to $60.90. Thornburg Mortgage (TMA) slid 6.37% on a UBS cut to neutral from buy, and JP Morgan lowered Moody's (MCO) to underweight following yesterday's disappointing earnings report. Shares of the credit-ratings firm traded down 5.66% to $43.33. MBIA Insurance (MBI) swung to a net third-quarter loss and posted slipping operating income of $1.52 a share, which missed the average analyst estimate by 7 cents. Shares of the Armonk, N.Y., company tumbled 14.86% to $46.99. IntercontinentalExchange (ICE) beat third-quarter earnings projections, per Thomson Financial, but retreated 3.89% following yesterday's big run-up. Ameriprise (AMP) lost 3.83% to $63.28 after the asset manager posted an in-line adjusted profit for the quarter.
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