Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Stronger Euro, Oil, US Stocks Make Wall Street a Winner

Whatever it is these Wall Street geniuses are smoking, they should be encouraged to pass some along to the rest of America, because, as Main Street struggles with high unemployment, stagnant wages, underwater housing and simply making ends meet, stocks just continue to run higher, as they did today.

Besides Italian President Silvio Berlusconi preparing to step down amid his country's burgeoning debt crisis, there wasn't much news on the European front, and even less news here in the USA, but traders saw fit to add to positions, or at least goose stocks a touch higher though still in the same range that's persisted since the end of July.

Almost all asset classes were marked up as the Euro gathered strength, pushing down the value of the dollar. That's all you need to know. Wall Street has this game figured out, like it or not, and they're not deviating from the game plan. Stocks are king no matter what happens in the rest of the world, until they're not, and we all know what happens then.

Meanwhile, the next crisis looming comes from - you guessed it - Washington, where lawmakers (yeah, that's a good term, like they make any that matter) were busy fighting with each other, as they normally do, just two weeks from the November 23 deadline for the "Super-committee" to come up with something along the lines of $2-4 trillion in budget cuts. Time is running out on the paid monkeys in congress and progress has been slow to nil.

If a deal is not reached by the deadline, some supposedly automatic cuts will take place, though it's almost a certainty that the wily legislators will find their ways around that boondoggle as well, leaving America in just about the same shape it was in before all the nonsense began over the debt limit. The free-spenders (all of them except Ron Paul and few others) got what they wanted in August: more money, and they will allow the rest of the country to burn rather than reach consensus and compromise.

They should all be kicked out of office, or, barring that, mostly ignored. As John Bogle said last evening on CBS news, "America is losing the ability to govern itself." Maybe that will be a better outcome.

Dow 12,170.18, +101.79 (0.84%)
NASDAQ 2,727.49, +32.24 (1.20%)
S&P 500 1,275.92, +14.80 (1.17%)
NYSE Composite 7,671.91, +81.48 (1.07%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,862,988,625
NYSE Volume 3,908,488,000
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 4134-1511
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 124-66
WTI crude oil: 96.80, +1.28
Gold: 1,799.20, +8.20
Silver: 35.15, +0.33

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