Goldman Sachs Dents Bulls' Ardor

The SEC fraud charge vs. Goldman has dented but not dashed bullish sentiment as a new week begins.
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NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) --

Goldman Sachs

(GS) - Get Report

and the

Securities and Exchange Commission's

fraud

complaint against the storied Wall Street firm has dented but not dashed the bulls' enthusiasm heading into a new trading week.

Sentiment still remains bullish but less so that it has been in recent weeks.

As of 9:15 a.m. EDT Monday, poll participants who were bullish tallied 630, or 51.8%, of the 1,217 votes cast in TheStreet.com's RealMoney Barometer Poll. Bears scored 446 votes, or 36.6% of the total, while survey-takers who were neutral racked up 141 votes, or 11.6%.

Premarket futures suggest stocks will open lower in New York on Monday. Stocks overseas were lower Monday as the Goldman news reverberated around the globe. Stocks in Japan fell 1.7%, while stocks in China plunged 4.8%. European markets were slightly lower.

Goldman shares lost almost 13% on Friday after the SEC filed the civil complaint against Goldman alleging fraud in the firm's marketing of a subprime mortgage product.

Not surprisingly, commercial banks were overwhelmingly viewed by survey-takers as the sector most likely to decline this week, followed closely by investment banks and brokers. That makes sense after the Goldman news Friday, but some investors see an opportunity as well in commercial banks as the sector was selected as the one most likely to post gains.

Last week,

JPMorgan Chase

(JPM) - Get Report

and

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report

posted better-than-expected earnings reports that led to a rally in bank shares before the Goldman news hit. Investors Monday will get another read on the sector when

Citigroup

(C) - Get Report

reports its first-quarter earnings before the opening bell. Goldman's earnings are scheduled for Tuesday.

Despite the Goldman news that led to a triple-digit drop in the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

on Friday, the Dow and

Nasdaq

managed to post gains for last week. The Dow rose 0.2% for the week while Nasdaq gained 1.1%. The

S&P 500

fell 0.2%.

> > Bull or Bear? Vote in Our Poll

The poll closed at 9:15 a.m.

Here's a wrap-up of our other polls:

As investors who've been staring up at the airline mergers and acquisitions flight board lately can attest, the carriers and connections have been changing day by day.

First it was

UAL

(UAUA)

merging with

US Airways

(LCC)

, before it was

Continental Airlines

(CAL) - Get Report

ruining US Airways merger party by taxiing into its M&A gate; before it again looked like the skies were friendly for a deal between UAL/US Airways.

So which airline M&A connection will be made?

TheStreet

sought to take the pulse of investors last week, asking readers,

Do you think the third attempt at a connection will be the charm for UAL and US Airways?

The upshot: Investors are apparently betting on an airline deal to be consummated, but they aren't betting on the decade-long effort between UAL and US Airways to be the one. Only 29% of survey-takers think that the third time will be the charm for UAL and US Airways and the deal will get done. That's compared with 55% of survey respondents who think that airline industry consolidation is about to happen, but it won't be between UAL and US Airways. (Read: Continental Airlines).

Approximately 16% of survey-takers said flat-out that UAL and US Airways won't get a deal done, and these voters had no opinion on the potential for Continental or any other airline to broker a deal. In other words: Don't book your ticket yet.

>>Click here for full results and analysis of our airline merger poll

On Wednesday, April 7, just a day before the opening round of The Masters golf tournament,

Nike

(NKE) - Get Report

released a new, roughly 30-second ad, featuring a silent

Tiger Woods

, with the voice of his deceased father, Earl, posthumously reprimanding his son.

The response to the ad was nothing if not impassioned. Some who watched it found it creepy and off-putting. Others praised it for its boldness, arguing that the fact that it was generating such strong opinions was, empirically, a positive for Nike.

We were curious how you, the users of

TheStreet

felt, and so we asked in a week-ong poll,

"What Do You Think About Tiger's New Nike Ad?"

Three in 10 -- or 30.4%, to be exact -- of respondents to the survey replied that the ad was an appropriate way for Tiger to show contrition. That, of course, means that a while 69.6% sided instead with the notion that the ad was creepy and strange in a way that is almost beyond words.

>>Click here for full results and analysis of our Tiger Woods Nike ad poll

What will be the fate of beleaguered smartphone maker

Palm

(PALM)

?

In the first week of April, reports surfaced that Palm had hired a series of high-profile tech bankers, including Frank Quattrone and Goldman Sachs, to scout out potential suitors. Not surprisingly, M&A arbitrage traders dialed into Palm shares.

Thus, we asked readers of

TheStreet

:

Will a tech sector suitor answer Palm's call of distress at a price to merit all the recent trading in Palm shares?

The results we received from survey-takers indicated that readers believe a deal for Palm is likely, but that the price that RBC Capital Markets thinks Palm shares can command is a leap of faith.

Approximately 65% of survey-takers think a deal for Palm -- in some shape or form -- will get done: Approximately 37% of poll participants think Palm will be sold, but will command a lower price than expected. Another 28% of survey respondents are convinced that bankers can phone this deal in: Palm will be connected to an acquirer soon, as there is no other choice for the company. Add those together, and there's your 65%.

>>Click here for full results and analysis of our Palm deal poll

Apple's

(AAPL) - Get Report

new mobile advertising platform, iAd, is poised to squeeze

Google's

(GGOG)

place in the market, according to a recent weeklong poll in

TheStreet.

Last week, Apple announced that its new iPhone, which will debut this summer, will include updated 4.0 OS software that will allow ads to run on applications.

In response, we asked the readers of

TheStreet

: "Will Apple's iAd system ultimately hurt Google's place in the mobile ad market?"

The response: a surprisingly sizable 78.3% of voters say yes, that iAd will ultimately hurt Google's place in the mobile ad market; a mere 21.7% don't think it will have any effect.

>>Click here for full results and analysis of our Apple iAd versus Google poll

NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) -- In its move to charge customers for their carry-on luggage, budget airline

Spirit Airlines

isn't generating much goodwill among investors -- at least, that is, according to a recent poll by

TheStreet

.

After Spirit Airlines announced that it would begin charging travelers who pay at the gate up to $45 each way for each carry-on bag that doesn't fit under the seat,

TheStreet

asked investors

what they thought of Spirit's new rule

.

The response was unambiguous: remove this new rule, Spirit Airlines, or we won't get on the plane.

Indeed, the results of the poll were the most lopsided of any poll

TheStreet

has offered in more than a year, with more than 94.3% of respondents replying that they would not pay the additional fee to fly on Spirit Airlines -- agreeing with the notion that the airline is ripping off its customers in the name of flight safety.

>>Click here for full results and analysis of our Spirit Airlines carry-on baggage fee poll

-- Written by Joseph Woelfel and Ty Wenger in New York.