New unemployment claims remained steady last week suggesting that post holiday business activity remains on an even keel. Wall Street on the other hand saw the mixed 4th quarter profit reports to investors as an signal to sell. Not that what Wall Street does really matters, unless you're foolish enough to have your retirement invested there.
Speaking of foolish investments, the gold bugs are all excited about the 'big' jump in gold prices to $1262/oz, and they'll be happy to sell you some. You'd think they'd hang onto their gold if any of the things they tell you about the imminent collapse of the USD were actually true. Gold analysts that actually have a reputation to preserve are quite Bearish on the metal, saying not to buy until it hits a $900/oz or less. The last time it peaked in 1982 at $800/oz, the price continued to decline for 20 years. It would need to be $2400/oz to match the 1980 price if you adjust for inflation.
Gold is a commodity, it will never be used for money again. Even when they used gold as money, they stamped the value on it. Using gold just made counterfeiting hard to do, today almost all the 'money' only exists as digits in a computer. Bit Coin tries to do the same thing, but without a government to back it. Eventually it will go to zero, you'll know this is about to happen when your online drug dealer stops accepting Bit Coins as payment.
The Pope has cleaned house at the Vatican Bank, this was an unusual wholesale purge of his predecessors appointments. He sacked all but one of the Cardinals in charge of banking even though they had all been re-appointed by the last Pope just before he left town. Messing with bankers isn't something Popes have been know to do in the past, apparently he has a death wish.
Republicans have proposed the first plank for their 2014 campaign platform, the repeal of the law closing the overseas tax havens that the billionaires use. The Act passed in early 2010 has been repeatedly delayed in implementation, and might go into effect by the end of this year. Republicans are adamant that this not happen despite the $300b annual cost to taxpayers, and probably will try to get it further delayed or crippled. Billionaires have made off with trillions over the years this way so you can see why the fiscal conservatives want to keep from plugging this drain.
Twitter @BruceEnberg - Where Conservative opinion is worth its weight in Bit Coins. (Bit Coins don't actually exist)