Financial Winners & Losers: Lehman Brothers

Lehman Brothers shares plummeted after a report that the Korean Development Bank broke off talks about an investment.
Author:
Publish date:

Weak home-sales data and reports that a South Korean bank has decided not to invest in

Lehman Brothers

(LEH)

sent financial shares spiraling downward Tuesday.

Declines of more than 2% in the NYSE Financial Sector Index reversed healthy gains in the previous session, which was the first trading day following the

government bailout

of

Fannie Mae

(FNM)

and

Freddie Mac

(FRE)

. The sector mirrored losses in the broader markets, with the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

down 1% and the S&P 500 down 1.5%.

A combination of factors was weighing on financial stocks. The National Association of Realtors reported a bigger-than-expected 3.2% drop in pending home sales in July, heightening fears that cheaper homes and lower mortgage rates might not improve the housing market, the main issue weighing on banks.

Dow Jones

also reported that a South Korean banking official said talks between

Korea Development Bank and Lehman

had ended without a deal.

Lehman shares fell as much as 43% to $8, the lowest level in about a decade, as investors wondered where -- or whether -- the investment bank would find the capital it needs to continue operations. Recently Lehman pared some of those losses, trading down 32.5% at $9.55.

Inadequate capital and the extent of housing- and credit-related losses remain the key issues financial firms are grappling with.

Washington Mutual

(WM) - Get Report

also continued to plunge Tuesday, dropping 20.4% to $3.28 recently. The savings and loan's stock fell 3.5% on Monday after WaMu, which has been suffering from bad housing bets, removed

CEO Kerry Killinger

from his post.

Wachovia

(WB) - Get Report

shares traded nearly 10% lower following a downgrade from a Merrill Lynch analyst, who cited an outlook for further weakness as the bank continues to cope with housing and credit losses.

On the other end of the spectrum, shares of Fannie Mae rose as much as 48% as investors continued to sort through the details of the government's intervention plan. Its counterpart Freddie Mac was down 12.1% further in recent trading.