We all know by now that a very political compromise has been reahced between members of Congress and the White House on the extension of unemployment benefits for an additional 13 months and of the so called Bush Tax cuts. The compromise includes additional tax cuts for the lower and middle income tax payers, some of which will come in the form of a reduction in a payroll tax.
The time has come for me to admit that buying EWJ (an exchange traded index fund of large Japanese stocks) three years ago was a mistake. Much of the rise in EWJ over the past six months was the function of the appreciating Yen, which hit a 15 year high against the $US about a month ago. It was not, however, due to underlying stocks rallying in Yen terms.