NEW YORK (Reuters) – A fire sale of(BSC.N) stunned and pummeled global financial stocks on Monday on fears that few banks are safe from deepening market turmoil.
Trying to assuage worries that the credit crisis is spinning out of control,said the United States was “on top of the situation,” but the sell-off intensified in the early afternoon.
Thegeared up for a deep cut in interest rates on Tuesday to blow money into the fragile financial system — the latest in a series of rate cuts that has brought down borrowing costs by 2-1/4 percentage points and hammered the U.S. dollar to record lows.
Staff at‘ Manhattan headquarters were welcomed to work on Monday by a two-dollar bill stuck to the revolving doors — a spoof on the bargain-basement price of $2 per share that (JPM.N) is paying for the firm. A hopeful Coldwell Banker real estate agent was hawking cheap apartments to employees who saw the value of their stock options go up in smoke.
The combination of Bear Stearns’ bailout and the Fed’s offer on Sunday to extend direct lending to securities firms for the first time since thehighlighted just how hard the credit crisis has hit Wall Street.
And it scared market players worldwide….