Markets Shiver as Worries About Banks Spread Across the World

by Wall Street Rebel - Michael London | 03/16/2023 8:18 AM
Markets Shiver as Worries About Banks Spread Across the World

On Wednesday, there was a significant level of volatility witnessed throughout a variety of asset markets, including stock markets, bond markets, and other sectors. This volatility was a reflection of new worries about the economy's condition and the risks present in the financial system.


The peace that had fallen over markets was shattered on Wednesday as fear of the unknown threats to the financial system sent shockwaves throughout the world, heightening concerns that a banking crisis might imperil the economy.

Credit Suisse, a 166-year-old Swiss bank struggling for years due to mismanagement and poor risk control, issued a warning this week about issues with its accounting methods, setting off the turbulence.

Concerns about Credit Suisse contributed to an overall feeling of dread over the state of the economy, despite the fact that the challenges faced by the Swiss bank are distinct from those faced by the American banks that have failed in recent days. Late in the day, the Swiss National Bank, which serves as Switzerland's central bank, said that it would assist Credit Suisse in staying afloat if it were essential to do so. This was done to ease the worries of nervous investors. A few hours later, the ailing lender announced that it would borrow up to 50 billion Swiss francs, equivalent to around $54 billion, from the central bank to allay worries over its current state of financial health.

After rebounding from a greater drop earlier in the day, the S&P 500 closed with a dip of only 0.7 percent. Still, trade-in bond and commodities markets showed investors were anxious about the economy. In addition to rates on U.S. government bonds, the price of oil fell to its lowest level in more than a year, and yields on other types of bonds also moved down.

Subscribe 100% Free to Wall Street and receive access to investment tools worth $17,500!

The actions brought attention to the vulnerability of the financial markets when traders and investors alike were uncertain of what will happen next. Investors were taken aback by the actions because they believe economies in the United States and others are more stable than the upheaval indicates. A rapid rise in interest rates over the last year was cited as a possible cause of the erratic trading.

This year was already going to be unpredictable for the economy and the markets, coming after a turbulent 2022, but "that uncertainty has only gone higher," said Dan Ivascyn, the chief investment officer of Pimco, the bond-fund manager with approximately $2 trillion in assets.

Wall Street has been on edge ever since the failure of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, both of which were seized by authorities after experiencing severe runs on deposits. Wall Street is a financial district in the United States. While the efforts of policymakers to minimize the risks by providing backstops for lenders have helped calm fears, Wednesday's trade demonstrated that the uneasiness is not yet totally addressed.

The shares of Credit Suisse fell to an all-time low when the bank's biggest shareholder, Saudi National Bank, said that it would not be providing the company with more funding as it works through its most recent turnaround plan. The Swiss National Bank has said that it is prepared to assist Credit Suisse if such assistance is required. Nevertheless, this announcement was made before European shares were severely impacted, with the equities of several of the region's largest banks plummeting dramatically.

Subscribe 100% Free to Wall Street and receive access to investment tools worth $17,500!

Investors found some solace in the fast action taken by regulators throughout the globe, and rating agencies have underlined that European banks have less exposure to the dangers that brought down tiny lenders in the United States.

S&P Global Ratings lowered the credit rating of First Republic Bank, another American institution that investors are concerned about, into the so-called junk category just before the markets started in the United States. The agency noted that the bank's $176 billion deposit base is more concentrated than the deposit bases of many other banks, with a large share of commercial clients holding balances that are greater than the $250,000 limit that the government insures against loss. As a result, the agency described the risk of deposit withdrawals as being "elevated."

The share price of First Republic plunged by 21 percent on Wednesday, while the share price of PacWest Bank, another bank whose shares have been under pressure as of late, fell by 13 percent. As a result of the volatility, trading was temporarily halted at different intervals during the day.

The turmoil in financial markets occurred in the context of the worrying undercurrent of a financial crisis that is in the process of developing while detrimental inflationary pressures continue. The doctor's recommended treatment for excessive inflation is an increase in interest rates, yet this remedy has also led to the poor health of certain institutions.

Subscribe 100% Free to Wall Street and receive access to investment tools worth $17,500!

Until recently, it was anticipated that central bankers in the eurozone would continue aggressively pushing interest rates higher in light of the subsequent turbulence. On Thursday, they will determine whether or not to continue hiking rates. The Federal Reserve's meeting will take place the following week.

The head of foreign fixed income at National Alliance Securities, Andrew Brenner, said that the Fed is "crazy" if it believes it can tighten. The central bank "will destroy the banking system if they continue to think in this manner," he continued.

The yield on the two-year Treasury note, which is most sensitive to Fed policy, declined by over a third of a percentage point, a significant change for this asset, to around 3.9%. Wednesday's futures markets revealed that investors were divided about whether the Fed would increase rates by a quarter-point at their next meeting or if they would deviate from their previously anticipated trajectory and maintain current interest rates.

"This is not a done deal. This need not result in a severe financial disaster." Kristina Hooper, chief global market strategist at Invesco, said, "They may and should consider the idea."

Futures market investors also increased their wagers that the Fed would begin reducing interest rates in the second half of the year, a clear indication that they believe the mounting crisis may force the central bank's hand. Before the most recent turbulence, the Fed repeatedly said that it had no intentions to decrease interest rates this year.

Subscribe 100% Free to Wall Street and receive access to investment tools worth $17,500!

Investors' concern was reflected in falling bond and loan prices on debt markets, where banks and other investors facilitate loans to corporations worldwide. Fears that tension in the banking industry and among certain high-tech start-ups may have a domino effect and leave some of those businesses unable to pay their loans were exacerbated by the actions.


                       New fears among investors about the banking industry

Latest News

Stay Up to Date With The Latest
News & Updates

Join Our Newsletter


Rebel Yell Morning Market Report
Market Alerts
Offers from us
Offers from our trusted partners

Follow Us

Connect with us on social media

Facebook Twitter