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Tuesday, March 04, 2014 – Everybody Clap Your Hands

Everybody Clap Your Hands by Sinclair Noe DOW + 227 = 16,395SPX + 28 = 1873NAS + 74 = 435110 YR YLD + .08 = 2.69%OIL – 1.57 = 103.35GOLD – 15.90 = 1335.40SILV – .27 = 21.24 Ukraine has not exploded. The situation has not escalated, nor has it de-escalated. Apparently Russia and the West have both figured out that conflict has the potential for mutually assured destruction, not along the lines of the old nuclear Cold War, but potentially painful for both sides; and so today, everything is on hold. Vlad Putin said he sees no immediate need to invade Ukraine; the Obama administration is trying to put together $1 billion in loan guarantees. Secretary of State John Kerry visited Kiev and there is still talk of sanctions if things don’t de-escalate. Putin says sanctions would be cause for retaliation. The Ukrainian military has shown remarkable restraint, adopting a Gandhi-like non-violence stance in the face of overwhelming firepower. And for the moment, there is a standoff but not a truce. That could change tomorrow. A story in Politico today says the Russians no longer respect or fear Western leaders. Why? “Russia thinks the West is no longer a crusading alliance. Russia thinks the West is now all about the money.” Quite so. More specifically, “Putin’s henchmen know this personally. Russia’s rulers have been buying up Europe for years. They have mansions and luxury flats from London’s West End to France’s Cote d’Azure. Their children are safe at British …

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Monday, March 03, 2013 – Carry On

Carry Onby Sinclair Noe DOW – 153 = 16,168SPX – 13 = 1845NAS – 30 = 427710 YR YLD – .05 = 2.60%OIL + 2.20 = 104.79GOLD + 21.70 = 1351.30SILV + .18 = 21.51 Manufacturing expanded at a faster pace than projected in February. The Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) manufacturing index rose to 53.2 from 51.3 in January. A reading above 50 indicates expansion in manufacturing activity. Consumer spending in the US climbed more than forecast in January, reflecting the biggest increase in services in over 12 years. Household purchases rose 0.4%, after a 0.1% gain the prior month. Disposable income, or the money left over after taxes, rose 0.3% after adjusting for inflation. It dropped 0.2% in the prior month and was up 2.8% from January 2013. The saving rate was 4.3% in January, unchanged from the prior month. Wages and salaries increased 0.2% after dropping 0.1% in December. The big economic report this week will be the monthly jobs report on Friday. Faster than you can say “the Russians are coming”, they invaded Ukraine. Moscow now has operational control of the Crimean Peninsula, with about 6,000 airborne and ground troops. Russia has military bases on the Red Sea, but the troops have gone off base. The Russians have just taken over without any real fighting; indeed, many Crimeans are sympathetic to Russia. Ukraine has a large Russian ethnic minority, which it inherited mainly as the result of Soviet policies, including a re-drawing of the inner map …

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Friday, February 21, 2014 – Grab Tight and Hope for the Best

Grab Tight and Hope for the Best by Sinclair Noe DOW – 29 = 16,103SPX – 3 = 1836NAS – 4 = 426310 YR YLD -.02 = 2.73%OIL – .50 = 102.25GOLD + 3.10 = 1327.10SILV + .03 = 21.95 Sometimes you just grab tight and hope for the best. There is a deal in the Ukraine. Ukraine’s opposition leaders signed an EU-mediated peace deal with President Viktor Yanukovich. Under pressure to quit from mass demonstrations in Kiev, Russian-backed Yanukovich made a series of concessions, including a national unity government and constitutional change to reduce his powers, as well as announcing an early presidential election this year. The Ukrainian parliament then voted to revert to a previous constitution, which essentially stripped Yanukovich of some powers, sacked his interior minister blamed for this week’s bloodshed, and amended the criminal code to pave the way to release his arch-rival, jailed opposition leader and former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. The deal was mediated by the foreign ministers of Germany, Poland and France, and appears to have been a victory for Europe in its competition with Moscow for influence. The European envoys signed the document as witnesses, but a Russian envoy did not. And just because a deal has been signed it doesn’t mean it will be easy. Protesters remain encamped in Kiev’s central Independence Square, where approximately 77 activists had been killed over the past week. There were some celebrations but many of the demonstrators were skeptical that Yanukovich could be trusted. Ukraine …

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