Bank of America (NYSE:BAC): Another day, another analyst ax to forecasts for big banks (NYSEARCA:XLF): This time, it’s Nomura cutting Q4 earnings estimates for several, citing “the difficult trading backdrop, soft investment banking trends [and] limited expense flexibility.” Share price targets are lowered: Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) to $7 from $8, Citigroup (NYSE:C) to $36 from $38, Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) to $130 from $141, and Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) to $18 from $20.
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JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE:JPM): The WSJ reports the Fed is expected to accept Basel rules requiring banks to hold more capital. Preliminary estimates put JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) in the top category, showing it would need to hold 2.5% of extra capital on top of the 7% base all institutions will be required to hold. Citigroup (NYSE:C) also could land in the top bucket. American Express (NYSE:AXP): Is also falling in sympathy as bank stocks take a sector beating.
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Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) has already shelled out $33.2 billion in losses related to its home loan unit that it purchased in early, 2008 and it could face another $20 billion, bank analyst Dick Bove says in a note.
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McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) is closing out an incredible 2011 with an approximately 30 percent return.
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Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) is thinking about selling even more assets as it straggles behind its major U.S. competitors in following new capital rules. However, an end-of-the-year memo to employees from CEO Brian Moynihan reportedly said that despite an unimpressive stock price, Bank of America had made “significant progress” in dealing with its predicament.
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MetLife Inc. (NYSE:MET) reports that it will sell most of its U.S. retail deposit business to GE Capital Financial Inc. (NYSE:GE) as the insurance company seeks to finish its time as a bank holding company. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter, but financial terms weren’t revealed.
J. P. Morgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) is likely to comply with the capital requirements by end of next year.
Despite raising tensions in Iran, oil is trading lower Wednesday. As a result, oil giants such as Chevron Corp. (NYSE:CVX) and Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) are helping to led the Dow lower. “Closing the Strait of Hormuz for Iran’s armed forces is really easy , or as Iranians say it will be easier than drinking a glass of water,” Iran’s navy chief Habibollah Sayyari told Iran’s English language Press TV.
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As the U.S. dollar continues to strengthen, Dow material plays such as Alcoa, Inc. (NYSE:AA) and Caterpillar, Inc. (NYSE:CAT) are down more than 2 percent Wednesday. Shares of Alcoa have declined 44 percent year-to-date, while Caterpillar is down only 4 percent for the year.
Technology Dow components such as Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) and Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE:HPQ) are both down more than 1 percent. HP continues to refute exploding printer claims. The company issued a statement explaining the no one reported a exploding printer due to a hacker, but still produced a firmware update just to be on the safe side.
Rounding out the Dow losers is Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE), the Dow’s largest pharmaceutical company. Shares hit a fresh 52-week high on Tuesday, but were down more than 1 percent Wednesday. Earlier this month, Fitch established a negative 2012 outlook for pharmaceutical companies due to patent expirations and soft demand.
Disney (NYSE:DIS): Three of Disney’s four Orlando parks — the Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios – had to delay entry for about 90 minutes for day ticket holders on Wednesday to “ensure guests had a memorable experience,” said a Disney official.
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Kraft (NYSE:KFT): Shares are selling off today as investors may be locking in some profits after a 19.5% gain in 2011.
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