Some slivers of sunshine amidst the economic clouds today. First, retail sales are up for the first time in six months, perhaps signaling that consumers aren’t as bearish on the economy as President Obama appears to be. I like the President and certainly wish him success, but his mantra of “we have nothing to fear except a shortage of fear” isn’t going to be celebrated at the Smithsonian anytime soon. All in all, retail sales climbed one percent in January – the largest increase since December, 2007. The spike may not last, especially if gasoline prices rise, but it’s good …

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The End.