I know it is a little bit OT, but what do people out there think of financial stocks currently? Some of them are down tremendously. I have recently bought 3 in my portfolio:
GNW - This is Genworth Financial. I bought them because Smart Money named them as one of their 4 or 5 best picks for 2008. They are under $22 from a high of $37. They are in great growth industry and very well run. They do have some sub-prime exposure, but SM believes they were better run than average.
ACAS - American Capital specializes in making loans to businesses. In previous annual reports, they discussed not making loans in the subprime arena. They have had tremendous insider buying of late and pay an unbelievable 13.7% dividend (stock price is down from $49 to $29). To me this is a classic "baby thrown out with the bathwater" case. I suspect they will have more demand than ever for loans with the tightening of credit markets.
BCS - Barclays is a huge European bank. International Banks have not been immune to the sub-prime contagion and Great Britain (see Northern Rock) has had their own problems. Still they are a well-run bank from all I can see and down from $62 to $35 while now paying a 8.2% dividend that I have not heard being at risk.
With these financial bargains out there, I am having trouble wanting to put money at work in MFI. I am curious to know what other people think.
MBI is another tempting stock. They are down from $76 to $8.55. Barron's thinks they have dropped too much and some smart money has been buying of late. Even good old C, now down below $25 is starting to look tempting. Gotta believe they have thrown the entire kitchen sink in recent quarter. I have a friend that like PMI, they insure mortgages. Too risky for my blood as they're directly in line of fire. But they're down from $50 to 6.50. The final one on my watchlist is FMD, First Marblehead. They make student loans and are down from $56 to $14. Smart money like Goldman Sachs piled in recently, I gotta believe that FMD will weather the credit crisis and move back towards $30 as there isn't much competition in this arena.
Anyway, apologize for being off topic, but I may be throwing some dollars towards these companies in coming months. This blog will benchmark where the stocks stood today.