Market Bits: Germany Deflates, Bank Earnings, Gold Wavers

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Banking stocks were the story of the day on Monday, with Wells Fargo ( WFC) among the early losers among major U.S. financial names. Shares were falling 6% to $25.08 in early trading.

Wells Fargo announced third-quarter earnings of $4.1 billion, or 72 cents a share, a penny below the consensus estimate among analysts polled by Thomson Reuters. Investors were disappointed with a 4% quarter-over-quarter decline in revenue.

Shares of Citigroup ( C) were up over 2% to $28.98 in early trading after the company reported third-quarter earnings of $3.8 billion, or $1.23 a share. The resultsincluded an accounting gain of 39 cents from the declining value of its own debt, similar to the third-quarter debit valuation adjustment reported by JPMorgan Chase ( JPM).

Excluding the accounting gain, Citi earned 84 cents a share in the third quarter, beating the consensus earnings estimate of 82 cents a share among analysts polled by Thomson Reuters, with strong growth in Citi's international consumer banking business offsetting weaker trading and investment banking revenues.

Germany put the damper on any enthusiasm regarding Europe's plans to stabilize its financial institutions. A spokesperson for German leader Angela Merkel said that "dreams that are taking hold again now that with this package everything will be solved and everything will be over on Monday won't be able to be fulfilled." The spokesperson went on to say that the crisis would likely extend into 2012.

Despite earlier enthusiasm for what seemed liked progress from the Group of 20 finance ministers over the weekend, investors were hedging themselves in case a purported grand plan to stabilize eurozone banks falls short of expectations. Officials have said they will reveal details at a Oct. 23 summit in Brussels. Already, finance ministers have pledged to support capital needs of eurozone banks and the European Union has vowed to that it would maximize the effectiveness of the bailout fund.

Gold prices were standing their ground Monday on the hope that Europe can contain and solve its sovereign debt crisis.

Gold for December delivery was up $4.40 at $1,687.40 an ounce at the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The gold price has traded as high as $1,696.80 and as low as $1,677.60 an ounce while the spot gold price was adding $3.20, according to Kitco's gold index.



Kitco's Gold Index points to stronger physical demand with the gold price actually up $11.40, but those gains tempered by a stronger U.S. dollar. India's famous Diwali season starts next week. The festival of lights marks a tradition of gift exchanges and shopping particularly for gold jewelry. Buying goods, especially during the first five days of the festival, is considered good luck and many experts are looking for a ramp up in physical gold purchases.
This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.