Thursday, April 22, 2010

When Will the Music Stop, the Fraud End?

Following yesterday's post about Goldman Sachs, Greece and the intra-day triple top on the Dow, my midday work routine was broken by a screaming message from the ether: "Dow down 100 points in early trading!"

Being ever skeptical of my prognosticating prowess, I triple-clicked over to Yahoo! Finance (seriously, who puts an exclamation point after their corporate name? Wal-Mart!, Cisco!, Paris Hilton!) to confirm that stocks had already begun their ascent from the morning's depths. Surely, the short-covering and naked buying by all the Goldman traders was underway. By the time the market had closed, my best suspicions were confirmed, with the Dow finishing on the green side of the ledger, along with the S&P and a nifty gain on the NAZ.

Today's rally, as part of the endless rally that has become Wall Street in the post-crisis, pre-Goldman-settlement era, is about as plausible as 2007 California real estate prices. It's all part of the game, which, to my mind, only Robert Prechter (Elliott Wave) has figured out. Well, and me. Goldman moves the market, no doubt about it. They've been doing it since 1988 with ample assistance from the Plunge Protection Team and tacit approval from the upper crusters in DC.

Stocks can only go down when the powers that be wish them to do so. So it is written in the Book of Sachs. Fundamentals don't matter, p/e doesn't matter, all that matters is where the herd will head for feeding, following the hidden hand signals from the leader of the pack, clandestinely dictating market direction via sham trades, public bogus recommendations (remember Goldman's call for $200/barrel oil?) and equally dubious upgrades and downgrades.

Dow 11,134.29, +9.37 (0.08%)
NASDAQ 2,519.07, +14.46 (0.58%)
S&P 500 1,208.67, +2.74 (0.23%)
NYSE Composite 7,642.83, -1.84 (0.02%)

Advancing issues beat back decliners, 4085-2402, while new highs registered 867, to just 59 new lows. My occasional warning to ignore the new highs-lows divergence until at least June, as last year's fall and rise will produce a considerable amount of skew in those figures. Volume was again trending toward the upper end, which is reasonable considering the amount of trading that had to be undertaken to move the whole market higher.

NYSE Volume 6,682,984,000.00
NASDAQ Volume 2,727,952,500.00

What probably scared investors even more than bad news on the Greece front, and rightfully so, was the weekly initial unemployment claims figures issued at 8:30 am. Those came in at 456,000, below last week's unsightly 480,000, but still too high most most realists to stomach. Those figures must come down to around 300,000 weekly before anyone will speak "recovery" again.

But the chances of the unemployment figures falling soon seem slim, especially since congress passed an $18 billion extension last week that proffers "99 weekly unemployment checks averaging $335 to people whose 26 weeks of state-paid benefits have run out."

Yikes! That's two years worth of unemployment checks, or an average of just under $33,500 over the 99-week span, which is more than some people make actually working for a living. The government seems to be suggesting a longer-term unemployment lag than even most economists. Remember, employment is a lagging indicator, currently 9 months behind the official "end" of the recession.

Of course, Wall Street would rather most Americans believe the economy is continuing to improve, even while you're collecting unemployment checks and waiting for the bank to foreclose on your home. According to the elitists in our nation's capitol, it's all good.

Next they'll be selling us bridges... to nowhere, no doubt.

The underground economy is thriving on welfare, food stamps, unemployment and SS checks on a certain road to ruin.

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