Don't Like What's Happening? Change the Rules! - SEC BANS Short Selling on 799 Stocks

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission took what it called "emergency action" Friday and temporarily banned investors from short-selling 799 financial companies.

The temporary ban, aimed at helping restore falling stock prices that have shattered confidence in the financial markets, takes effect immediately

I wake up this morning and this is what I find, the entire rules of the game changed overnight. SEC bans short selling

It's one thing to ban naked shorts but to just change a major trading method on certain stocks overnight?

I thought these guys loved free markets? Comrade, not when they are losing money on their stocks?

Dominoes - The latest Details on Financial Failures

financial dominoes

There are so many failures, mergers, sales going on, we're going to update them here.

Latest on the chopping block appears to be Morgan Stanley is considering a merger with Wachovia. I don't think this news is so bad, it appears they are simply trying to cover the possibility of a collapse, although it appears Wachovia would honor $494M of Lehman credits in it's Money market funds.

Morgan Stanley goes to China. Guess what they are doing, begging for funds.

hedge funds maybe next according to this article.

WaMu is now Junk - Update, Up on the Auction Block

This is updating news on a previous post. The waves just keep on coming like a tsunami. The fall out is happening so fast and furious it's difficult to keep up.

WaMu for Sale via Auction:

Washington Mutual, the nation's largest thrift, has put itself up for sale, the New York Times reported on Wednesday, citing unidentified people briefed on the matter.

This actually was started a few days ago, via Goldman Sachs.

Now an auction implies ...what someone can get it for nothing or ? Details unclear but clearly the next wave in the storm.

Breakin' Up is Hard to Do - Those Lehman Brothers to Split

This is astounding. We didn't get our Friday surprise. I guess we didn't get the announcement of Lehman on Friday simply because they cannot work out the details to hide or cover another failure and now it appears they are planning on breaking Lehman Brothers up and selling it off.

We'll have to call it the Monday surprise which I'm sure they will try to delay for assuredly markets will tank.

Lehman Forced To Break Up?

Also, WaMu is wobbling, latest rumours.

What about the ban on naked shorts? With this kind of carnage going on why would they allow naked shorts? WSJ reports:

Just a Little FDIC News - 117 Banks in Big Trouble, Profits Plunge 86%

Today is all DNC, all of the time to the point one is about to get absolutely nauseated listening to these 24/7 Cable pundit talking heads rambling on like Charlie Brown's teacher ...

so it's a very good time to release some bad news right?

The FDIC reports:

117 banks and thrifts were considered to be in trouble in the second quarter, up from 90 in the prior quarter and the biggest tally since mid-2003.

of course hidden further IndyMac will cost more:

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp said on Tuesday it now expects IndyMac's failure in July to cost its insurance fund $8.9 billion, compared with the previous expected range of $4 billion to $8 billion

Go To College, Get in Massive Debt, Can't Find a Job, Can't Pay 'em Off

Wow, here are some real horror stories on student loans and thanks (I'll assume) to bankruptcy law changes, the debt is very tough to get out of.

Seems there is one guy out there who has created a website trying to get anyone to listen.

This article in the New York Times goes into some real horror stories.

Basically people cannot find jobs or get sick and so on and can't pay them off, but the late fees, interest rate increases, penalties read like your classic predatory credit card.

End of Illusions - The Economist on US Financial System

The Economist has a new article out, End of Illusions. It goes over the history of Freddie Mac/Fannie Mae, how they operate and is implying the US financial system is a house of cards. (or in this case, Turtles propping up the world analogy, sorry Hindus!)

They (Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae) were set up (see article) to provide liquidity for the housing market by buying mortgages from the banks. They repackaged these loans and used them as collateral for bonds called mortgage-backed securities; they guaranteed buyers of those securities against default.

Bail out of Fannie/Freddie a "Disaster" - Jim Rogers

Fannie Plan a `Disaster' to Rogers; Goldman Says Sell

They are short, at least there is a disclosure.

The U.S. Treasury Department's plan to shore up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is an ``unmitigated disaster'' and the largest U.S. mortgage lenders are ``basically insolvent,'' according to investor Jim Rogers.

Taxpayers will be saddled with debt if Congress approves U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson's request for the authority to buy unlimited stakes in and lend to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Rogers said in a Bloomberg Television interview. Rogers is betting that Fannie Mae shares will keep tumbling.