The Dead Presidents CDOs now reportedly being investigated by the Justice Department were not your garden-variety synthetics:
Is it a coincidence that the price of gold hit an all-time high just as David Cameron was becoming the prime minister of Britain? Yes. But it’s also indicative of the enormous amount of uncertainty that continues to pervade the market. If you’re just looking at the stock market, you’re not looking at the most sensitive barometer of fears about the global economy in general and the eurozone in particular. As Paul Krugman notes, the euro/dollar exchange rate is probably a better place to look, and that’s now back down below 1.27, after trading at 1.50 as recently as December. For what it’s worth, here’s the price of gold in euros:
Manhattan incomes rose by 35.5%, in real terms, between 2000 and 2008. Manhattan, Kansas, that is. Meanwhile, in much more educated and vibrant cities like Raleigh and Austin, real incomes fell substantially. What’s going on here? Mike Mandel looks at the numbers:
Of all the silly theories about the cause of Thursday’s stock-market plunge, I’m not entirely sure why the WSJ has decided to give particular credence to the idea that it can all be traced back to a single $7.5 million trade for 50,000 options contracts. Lots of options trades of that size take place every day, and just because this one happened just before the market fell doesn’t mean it was the cause of the crash.
It’s not all that easy to tell, but it looks very much as though most of today’s market rally is a function of the ECB deciding that it can start buying bonds in the secondary market after all. The trillion-dollar announcement from the EU looks big and grand, but ultimately is so vague that few market participants would place much stock in it.