Should We Avoid Bank Stocks in 2023?
Is the financial sector a buy-low right now for opportunistic investors?
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Mike Sakuraba graduated with double major of English and Economics. Part time writer, part time investor, full time dad. Mike loves writing about technology, sports, and investing.
2023-03-18 11:30

Should You Avoid the Banking Sector?
What a couple of weeks it has been on Wall Street. In a matter of days, we saw the sudden collapse of three regional banks: SVB Financial Group, Signature Bank, and Silvergate Capital. While none of the big banks fell as they did during the Global Financial Crisis in 2008, it is still a concerning turn of events, particularly given the current fragility of the US economy. Only after billions of dollars in bailouts and increasing the Fed’s balance sheet once again, was a full-on financial crisis avoided.

Should We Avoid Bank Stocks in 2023?

So this begs the question: is the financial sector a buy-low right now for opportunistic investors? Bank stocks are trading at year-to-date lows, with some, like First Republic Bank (NYSE: FRC), trading at their lowest levels in nearly a decade. With First Republic getting a bailout from the major banks, one would assume that it is in a much better position than its peers that were shut down last week.

Are the Big Banks Safer?
This might seem like an obvious answer and it probably is. Still, it is worth discussing, especially with the collapse of other international major banks like Credit Suisse. Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) is down by 22% over the past month, Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC) is down by 21%, and Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) is down by 17%. Are any of these banks going anywhere? Likely not. A 20% swing for bank stocks rarely happens so if you are looking to add some stable stocks to your portfolio for the long term, this might be a great opportunity.

And then there is JPMorgan (NYSE: JPM). The largest of the big banks has nearly single-handedly held up the financial system. It has provided major capital to these regional banks and has seen a large influx of customers. As of now, JPMorgan seems impenetrable and in a moment of weakness for the financial sector, the bank has gained even more strength than before.

Is JPMorgan Stock a Buy?
Personally, I’d steer clear of financials right now until the dust settles. Even if you do not time the absolute bottom, it is safer knowing that banks will be on firmer footing moving forward. I do think that the big banks mentioned above are worth adding to at these levels if you are considering holding them for the long term. If you ask me, five or even ten years from now, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan will all be just fine.

As for the regionals, there are far too many red flags for my liking. Liquidity issues are one thing but to see some of the poor financial decisions that were made by these banks is not encouraging at all. If you have a high-risk tolerance and you want to swing trade some of these then, by all means, be my guest. If you are looking to hold them for longer, I would seriously question whether many of these are still in business five years from now.


Disclaimer: I have no positions in any of the stocks mentioned. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article. All information should be independently verified and should not be relied upon for purposes of transacting securities or other investments. See terms for more info.

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2023-03-18 11:30

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About the Author
Mike Sakuraba graduated with double major of English and Economics. Part time writer, part time investor, full time dad. Mike loves writing about technology, sports, and investing.


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