Countrywide's Gloomy CEO Spooks Wall Street

Market euphoria over BofA's $2 billion investment in the mortgage lender vanished after its chief's bearish comments on the economy and housing

A sudden wave of stock-market euphoria Thursday spurred by news Bank of America (BAC) was extending a $2 billion lifeline to No. 1 mortgage lender Countrywide Financial (CFC) vanished just as quickly. The reason? Bearish comments from Countrywide’s CEO on the housing market and the economy reminded investors that despite the recent calming in the markets, credit problems remain a very real threat to U.S. economic growth.

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