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  • Its all about the yen...

    * Japan dominates news wires... * US retail sales to drop... * Russia devalues the ruble again... * Happy Birthday Kathy Butler... ** Its all about the yen... Good day...Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday, I had a great Christmas and Christmas eve. I ate entirely too much, but that is one of the joys of the holidays! Most of the markets were closed yesterday, and trading was very light on Christmas eve. The Asian markets were open, and the dollar did sell off a bit vs. most of the major currencies with the one exception being the Japanese yen. Unless we see a big bounce today, the yen will end the day with the first weekly loss vs. the US$ in two months. With a majority of markets closed, most news stories centered around the Japanese yen. Japanese industrial production fell the most in 55 years as reported on Wednesday. Factory output plunged 8.1% from October, more than 6.8% estimated by economists. Other data released in Japan showed the jobless rate climbed to 3.9% from 3.7%, and household spending slid .5%, a ninth drop....
  • Govt to follow Buffet's lead...

    * Govt to follow Buffet's lead... * Aussie $ has biggest gain ever... * Yen reverses on carry trades... * China's currency reserves rise... Good day...And what a day it was! As I stated in yesterday's Pfennig, Columbus day is just sort of a holiday for the markets. These 'semi-holidays' can create some volatile trading, as not all of the markets are open and many desks are short staffed. So with the Federal Reserve and the banking system closed, the equity markets had the largest one day gain in over seven decades. I guess the stock jockeys figured they weren't going to get any bad news out of the credit markets, which were closed, so no news is good news!! The rally was certainly welcomed, and hopefully some of the gains will stick today as we return to a normal trading environment. And I guess some of the credit for the stock rally has to go to finance ministers around the globe who finally agreed on a plan which seems to be able to work. The leaders of a majority of the worlds largest economies borrowed a page from Warren Buffet's playbook and decided to invest directly into some of their largest financial institutions. The Bush administration announced it would invest $125 billion in nine of the biggest US banks. The US move came after France, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, and Austria committed $1.8 trillion to guarantee interbank loans and take equity stakes in European banks....