Wall Street may open lower on fear of a banking crisis

March 17 (Reuters) – U.S. stock index futures fall on Friday amid lingering investor fears over a potential banking crisis, even as major U.S. banks bail out regional lender First Republic Bank.

Dow futures fell 0.83% at 15:56 Moscow time, the S&P 500 fell 0.73%, the Nasdaq 100 fell 0.26%.

However, First Republic shares fell 12.1% over the counter after the bank suspended dividend payments.

The lender fell 58% this week after the recent collapse of SVB Financial and Signature Bank fueled fears of a wider banking crisis due to rising interest rates.

PacWest Bancorp shares traded before the main session fell 5.2%, while Western Alliance fell 1.7%. Stocks of large American banks showed mixed dynamics: JPMorgan and Citigroup shares were inactive, and Wells Fargo – showed a symbolic increase of 0.1%.

“Anyway, we’re not out of the wild yet. The rise we saw in the equity markets yesterday was more of a relief than a suggestion that we are over this crisis in any meaningful way,” said Stuart Cole of Equiti Capital.

The European Central Bank raised interest rates by 50 basis points on Thursday. The ECB’s supervisory board found no signs of the crisis spreading to eurozone banks on Friday after the recent turmoil involving Silicon Valley Bank and Credit Suisse.

Investors are anxiously waiting for next week’s Fed rate decision.

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(Shubham Batra and Amruta Khandekar in Bangalore)


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