UPDATE 2-WaMu's total losses seen at about $27 bln into 2011-UBS

lunes 9 de junio de 2008 18:54 CEST

(Adds analyst comments, background and updates share price details)

By Tenzin Pema

BANGALORE, June 9 (Reuters) - U.S. mortgage lender Washington Mutual Inc (WM.N: Cotización) will likely incur total losses of about $27 billion across all its asset classes into 2011, according to a UBS analyst, who also widened his loss view and cut his price target for the bank.

Shares of WaMu, which on Friday fell to a 16-year low of $7.12, fell about 12 percent Monday to a new low of $6.65. By afternoon, they pared some of the losses to trade down more than 10 percent at $6.74 on the New York Stock Exchange.

Since January, the Seattle-based company's share price has plunged 51 percent, as investors have been unnerved by heavy write-downs and fears that slowing economic growth would further hobble the lender.

"The attributes of WM's remaining loan portfolio and broader economic weakening mean our bias is that losses could be worse than our projection," analyst Eric Wasserstrom wrote in a note to clients.

"Conversely, a lower reserve balance in 2010 would drive upside to EPS, though uncertain economic conditions cloud this outlook," he added.

The analyst widened his second-quarter loss estimate to $1.12 a share, from his prior loss per share view of 91 cents. For 2008, Wasserstrom now expects a loss of $4.45 a share, from his prior loss per share view of $4.

Among 18 analysts covering Washington Mutual, analyst Wasserstrom ranks thirteenth in the accuracy of his earnings forecast, according to data compiled by Thomson Reuters.   Continuación...