GS vs. JPM
As GS trades below $160, many traders must be tempted to buy, and who can blame them? After all, it's only slightly above the $130 mark where it was trading when Buffett famously purchased the warrants.
I concede that GS is cheap, but I think I have a better bank in mind: JPM. Why would I choose JPM over GS? I have no idea how to value bank stocks because their business is too complex to understand. But I have another criteria, which I think only makes sense, and it's also so simple that even a fool can make the comparison.
Dimon vs. Blanfein.
Here you have two CEOs. One brags about his intelligent handling of the crisis, talks about doing God's work and seems to have a talent to attract scandals. The other is making money quietly and when he opens his mouth, it is to say some polite platitude along the lines "whatever your financial needs are, JPM is there to help". Which CEO would you rather bet on?
All things being equal, it's clearly more Foolish to bet on the CEO who is basically engaging in the same immoral but lucrative business without unnecessary noise, while Blankfein is digging himself deeper into the hole with every new interview. As a bonus, Dimon is reported to be Obama's favorite banker, while GS lost the post of Treasury Secretary with the appointment of Geithner and is now caught in the subprime mortgage scandal.