Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Morgan Stanley Earnings Subpar

Morgan Stanley posted a worse than expected loss of $177 million or 57 cents a share, as a dramatic improvement in the spreads on its own debt impacted its earnings by a negative $1.5 billion. Revenue slumped 62% to $3.04 billion. The company also announced it was slashing its dividend by 81%. It’s about time. Analysts were expecting a loss of 8 cents a share on revenue of $5 billion.

I’m not sure how the recent financial stock cheerleaders are going to paint this into a positive, but I’m sure they’ll find a way. I’d be hard pressed to call this earnings release anything other than horrible and the stock is actually trading lower in pre-market trading. On the other hand, with results like these, spreads on MS debt are likely to widen back out, helping the investment bank post a profit next quarter.


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