Stocks Jump As Mortgage Market Stabilizes

Justin Grant writes for Reuters that American stocks are way up as gold and oil prices plunge.

Big mortgage financiers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac surged for a third day on hopes they will stabilize the housing market.

Fears about rising inflation cooled as commodity prices fell across the board. Metal and oil investors retreated into cash, taking profits after a series of record peaks this year.

Prior to this week, investors had piled into gold, which emerged as a safe-haven after U.S. stocks slumped due to recession fears and the global credit crisis, sending the price of the metal briefly above $1,000 an ounce for the first time.

The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI climbed 166.97 points, or 1.38 percent, at 12,266.63. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index .SPX gained 17.79 points, or 1.37 percent, to 1,316.21. The Nasdaq Composite Index .IXIC was up 26.76 points, or 1.21 percent, at 2,236.72.

Fannie Mae (FNM.N: Quote, Profile, Research) and Freddie Mac (FRE.N: Quote, Profile, Research) soared after Keefe, Bruyette & Woods upgraded them, saying a decision by federal regulators to immediately reduce the amount of excess capital they need to hold should let the government-sponsored enterprises support liquidity in the mortgage market.

"Value investors are starting to see the Fed … has successfully made the statement that whatever disaster might pop up, they’re stepping in to liquefy the situation," said Michael Williams, chief investment strategist at Tocqueville Asset Management in New York. "This inflation-hawk kind of talk has been way overdone. The little guy panicked out of stocks."

About Luke Ford

Raised a Seventh-Day Adventist at Avondale College in Australia, Luke Ford moved to California in 1977. He graduated from Placer High School in 1984, reported the news at KAHI/KHYL radio for three years, attended Sierra College and UCLA, was largely bedridden by Chronic Fatigue Syndrome for six years, and converted to Judaism in 1993. From 1997-2007, Luke made his living from blogging. Living by Beverly Hills (Alexander90210.com), he now teaches the Alexander Technique (moving the way the body likes to move). Lessons cost $100 each and last about 45 minutes. In 2011, Luke completed a three-year teaching course at the Alexander Training Institute of Los Angeles. His personal Alexander Technique website is Alexander90210.com. Luke is the author of five books, including: » The Producers: Profiles in Frustration » Yesterday’s News Tomorrow: Inside American Jewish Journalism
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