Stock Market Troubles Hit Spokane

SPOKANE — Many people in the Spokane area express their concern for the fall of some major U.S. Banks on Monday and the possibility of more in the near future.

On Monday the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost more than 500 points amidst the failing of two major banks, and the threat of more to come.

“It’s absolutely a serious situation,” Spokane Investment Manager Mike Vickerman said. “I don’t think the media has overblown what’s going on,”

However, even with this warning, Vickerman also says people should not let this get out of control.

“You don’t want to panic,” Vickerman said.

There are several things that people can do to help themselves, while still helping the economy. For example, 401K’s have been plummeting in recent days, and there are a few things you can do.

First, muster up the courage to look at your balance and then talk to your company’s Human Resources Department, as your company may offer investment advice.

Then, consider reallocating your funds and possibly pull out your money or stop investing. However, keep in mind that this may not be the best option.

“That’s probably the absolute worst thing you could do,” Vickerman said.

If you invest, you should be aware that you will lose money sometimes, but if stay in it for the long haul it most likely will be worth your initial investment.

Another thing on many people’s mind is money in banks. More are failing everyday, but the government will insure any account below $100,000 in any, F.D.I.C. insured bank. If you have a lot of money you may consider spreading it out.

“We don’t want over 100-thousand dollars in one bank,” Vickerman said.

As for local banks, you should not need to worry. Sources and experts tell KXLY4 that Washington Trust, Sterling Savings, and other local financial institutions are just fine.

However, the same cannot be said for Washington Mutual.

“Washington mutual struggles because they became very involved in mortgage lending,” Vickerman said.

The bank has simply loaned more money out than they’ve gotten back. The Seattle-based giant has seen their stock plummet over the past few months, losing over 90% of its value over the past year.

“If everybody wants out all at the same time, that would force them into a collapse,” Vickerman said.

The most important thing you can get from all of this is that it is important to just use some common sense.

“It’s showing what debt can do to a company; it can do the same things to individuals,” Vickerman said.

Most of these banks got into trouble because they, incurred debt that they cannot repay.