NEW YORK ( Stockpickr) -- Just two months ago, investors had plenty of reason to cheer. The stock market was half a year in to a solid rally that began in October, 2011, and many portfolios were growing in value.
Yet since the second quarter began, the market has done a 180. Even as earnings season was quite solid, macro-economic concerns have ruled the day. Fears of a Greek-led crisis have been spooking the markets, though the U.S. economy has done its part: It looked quite perky this past winter, but appears to be cooling off as employment trends weaken anew and analysts dim their view for both corporate and consumer spending for the rest of 2012.
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In that light, a modest pullback in the market makes ample sense. Indeed the
could soon arrive at a point that is 10% below its recent early April peak of 1419. A 10% drop is typically known as a "stock market correction," though we'd need to see a 20% drop from the peak to call it a bear market.
Still, many companies must feel as if they are in a bear market. Their stocks have fallen really sharply since the quarter began and in some instances, they now represent such deep value that they are popping up on investors' radars.
four big losers in the second quarter of 2012
that could finish the year on a much brighter note.
Less than half a decade ago, this mega-bank was hurtling towards bankruptcy and needed a rescue from Uncle Sam. It's been a long road back, but
(C - Get Report)
is now far healthier: Profits are rising, book value is growing and the bank is now re-positioned to capture the growth prospects in the most dynamic regions of the globe.
As of the most recent quarter, Citigroup had assets (loans that are issued) of around $111 billion in Asia and Latin America. That's more than twice the figure of any other major American bank.
Meanwhile, shares have fallen more than 25% in the second quarter after a series of stumbles. A few months ago, the bank failed in its bid with regulators to get the green light to start buying back stock and pay more robust dividends. That left an incorrect impression that Citigroup had problems in the eyes of regulators. Instead, those regulators simply wanted to see Citigroup's capital base grow a bit larger before proceeding.