People watch stocks for different reasons -- they're waiting for a dip in price, watching for a specific catalyst, gathering all the news and information that might affect stocks they already own, or considering a sell. Regardless of their motivation, we can better understand market sentiment by seeing who's watching what. With the Fool's free My Watchlist service, we have tens of thousands of people telling us the businesses that have, for whatever reason, piqued their interest.

The most-watched financial services stock is ...
Looking at the aggregate data, we see that Citigroup (NYSE: C) is above the rest in terms of watch interest, the percentage of people keeping an eye on financial services stocks in general who are specifically watching each company. And for good reason. As CAPS player pool50 wrote in December:

The reality of the matter is investors' perceptions are formed and transformed from their relative experiences. Big banks were the cause of the Crisis of 08' so they are less appealing, more risky, and not a place to put your money. So the majority may believe. Let's not forget the banking industry is that special sector that directly indicates the state of our economy. Unless everyone believes we will remain in the trough forever, I don't see why the banks wouldn't be an enticing investment. Economy's getting better, Citi's undervalued. Let's not be myopic, Citi's a Buy.

Here are the rest of the top 15 most-watched companies in the industry with their watch interest along with the stocks' CAPS rating to show the sentiment of our investing community.

 

Company

Market Cap (millions)

CAPS Rating (out of 5)

Watch Interest

1

Citigroup

$129,578

***

34.4%

2

Bank of America (NYSE: BAC)

$135,320

***

23.2%

3

Leucadia National (NYSE: LUK)

$9,309

*****

10.0%

4

JPMorgan Chase

$184,636

**

7.9%

5

Interactive Brokers Group

$682

*****

6.9%

6

Moody's

$7,882

**

4.9%

7

Portfolio Recovery Associates

$1,468

****

4.3%

8

Brookfield Asset Management

$39,340

*****

1.3%

9

NYSE Euronext

$10,345

*****

1.2%

10

Nasdaq OMX Group

$4,974

****

1.1%

11

CME Group

$20,402

***

0.6%

12

Compass Diversified (NYSE: CODI)

$692

*****

0.5%

13

KKR Financial (NYSE: KFN)

$1,767

***

0.5%

14

Life Partners Holdings (Nasdaq: LPHI)

$149

**

0.5%

15

CBOE Holdings (Nasdaq: CBOE)

$2,495

*****

0.3%

Source: Motley Fool, Motley Fool CAPS.

Whether you're keeping an eye on the industry stalwarts such as Citigroup or are watching an up-and-comer such as Interactive Brokers, it pays to watch. We can help you keep tabs on your companies with My Watchlist, our free, personalized stock tracking service. Click here to start now.

Dan Dzombak's musings and articles he finds interesting can be found on his Twitter account: @DanDzombak.

NYSE Euronext is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers recommendation. Interactive Brokers Group, Leucadia National, and Moody's are Motley Fool Stock Advisor choices. Brookfield Asset Management is a Motley Fool Global Gains recommendation. Portfolio Recovery Associates is a Motley Fool Hidden Gems pick. The Fool owns shares of Bank of America, Interactive Brokers Group, JPMorgan Chase, Moody's, and Nasdaq OMX Group. Through a separate Rising Star portfolio, the Fool is short Bank of America. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.