By Vivien Lou Chen
Market functioning is 'starting to be an issue'
Concerns about Credit Suisse's financial health reverberated across financial markets on Monday, feeding worries about a 2008-type Lehman Brothers collapse that might trigger a broader financial crisis. But one expert is saying not so fast.Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic adviser at Allianz and former CEO of bond giant PIMCO, said he doesn't think the comparison should apply. "I do not think this is a Lehman moment -- if a Lehman moment is defined [by] counterparty risk in the banking system," he said in an interview with CNBC. "If you're worried about systemic risk, look at the nonbanks, not the banks."
Shares of Credit Suisse , the Swiss banking giant and one of the most systemically important banks in the world, plummeted as much as 11% to a record low on Monday as the cost of insuring Credit Suisse debt against a default has soared. Speculation over whether the bank could collapse reached a frenzy over the weekend on social media. On Monday, all three major U.S. stock indexes headed higher in morning trading, while Treasury yields fell sharply lower amid renewed chatter about the possibility that the Federal Reserve could pivot away from aggressive rate hikes.Read: Credit Suisse: What's going on, and why its stock is fallingThe collapse of investment bank Lehman Brothers, as well as Bear Stearns Cos., is seen by many as the defining moment of the 2007-2009 financial crisis and recession, which was the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. For El-Erian, who is also president of Queens' College at Cambridge University, what the Credit Suisse and the recent U.K. market rout in bonds and the sterling indicate is that "there's anxiety not only about the things we knew -- tightening financial conditions and central bank mistakes, slowing global economy, all these other noneconomic issues -- there's also concern about market functioning...Market functioning, after years of repressed interest rates, is starting to be an issue."
See:The next financial crisis may already be brewing -- but not where investors might expectAs of Monday morning, investors returned to U.S. stocks, driven in part by a bad-news-is-good-news dynamic that's helped equities in the past. Dow industrials DJIA were up by more than 600 points, or 2%, and leading the other major indexes higher. A wave of buying in U.S. government debt also sent yields lower across the board, led by a decline in rates on the 5- and 7-year note. The 10-year yield fell 18 basis points, to 3.62%."We got to stop with this love affair with the pivot," El-Erian told CNBC. "We saw what it resulted in during the summer. If the Fed pivots, it's because we've had either an economic accident or a market accident. We should not be wishing for that because the journey to a pivot would be painful."
-Vivien Lou Chen
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
October 03, 2022 11:12 ET (15:12 GMT)
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