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  • Japan Posts a 4.8% GDP!

    In This Issue..

    * Risk Aversion goes away mad...
    * China just says 'no' to currency flexibility...
    * Maybe a return to fundamentals?
    * Gold continues to soar!

    Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! It's raining here, so it's one of those Rainy Days and Mondays... But I won't let it get me down, as opposed to the song! I got a chance to check out our new digs in the building next door to us here... Very nice! And... A long way from that small office I sat in on Olive St. a decade ago, when we started EverBank... To think back 10 years ago, and where we are today... Simply amazing!

    OK... As I told you Friday, the President was in China this past weekend, trying his best to get the Chinese to agree to a greater flexibility for the renminbi... Well... There were a few stories this past weekend that hinted about the Chinese agreeing to do such... But I prefer to go with this story that appeared on Reuters last night... 'The Chinese government has sought to distance itself from speculation surrounding a central bank statement earlier this week that was interpreted as a shift in currency policy towards a stronger yuan. However, a report on Saturday by Xinhua, the state-controlled Chinese news agency said that the government would not allow the currency to gain against the dollar in the short term.'

    ...
  • Risk aversion disappears again...

    In This Issue..

    * Risk aversion has left the building...
    * CIT survives without Fed help...
    * SNB tries to fight the markets...
    * Light week for US data...

    Good day... We had just an amazing weekend of weather here in St. Louis, and this morning is shaping up to be another beautiful day. Friday turned out to be a beautiful day for those who have taken our advice and diversified their holdings out of the dollar. Risk aversion was placed on the back burner again, and investors moved money back out of the dollar into higher yielding currencies. The dollar and yen got sold but all other currencies rallied, and investors also turned back toward gold pushing the metal above $950 for the first time in over a month.

    So what caused all of this confidence? First, the housing data released Friday morning in the US showed a slight pick up in both building permits and housing starts. While the housing markets have a long way to go, the data have given investors an indication that construction may have found a bottom. Not to throw cold water on investors confidence in the building numbers, but while the residential market may be bottoming out, the commercial market continues to tumble. I spoke to a good friend over the weekend who is a commercial real estate developer down in Memphis. He told me that his development pipeline has completely dried up, and even the brokerage side of his business has slowed. The only part of his business which has picked up is the marketing of foreclosed properties. He has shifted his concentration to helping banks and lenders 'work out' of commercial projects which they have taken back onto their books. The economy has kept most companies from opening new stores, and many continue to shut down under performing ones. My good friend tells me most of the people he talks to don't believe the commercial real estate market will turn around until the end of next year. Not good news for the banks who are still reeling from the residential real estate bust....