Heroic Afghans safeguarded their country's golden heritage

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By Angela Doland
Associated Press
Monday, December 11, 2006

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20061211/ap_en_ot/afghanistan_s_treasures_5

PARIS -- The mystery baffled archaeologists for more than two decades. What happened to 22,000 pieces of gold -- jewel-encrusted crowns, daggers, and baubles from an ancient burial mound -- that had apparently vanished from Afghanistan in the 1980s.

With the country mired in wars and general chaos, rumors swirled. Had the 2,000-year-old gold treasure trove been spirited away from the Afghan National Museum to Russia, or sold on the black market, or melted down? Many assumed it was gone forever, yet another cultural loss for a country that had become accustomed to such ruin.

Mortgage delinquencies threatening U.S. borrowers and banks

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By Marcy Gordon
Associated Press
Monday, December 11, 2006

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20061211/ap_on_bi_ge/home_mortgages

Mortgage delinquency and foreclosure rates are on the rise, and the impact could be greatest on low-income families that took out higher-interest loans for risky borrowers, some experts said Monday.

Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said the government wants to issue guidelines to banks and savings and loans that will allow people to get home loans "without taking unnecessary risks."

Ted Butler: The record speaks for itself

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4:50p ET Monday, December 11, 2006

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Silver market analyst Ted Butler's new commentary, "The Record Speaks for Itself," argues that the fundamentals and demographics favor natural resources for years ahead and that the short position in silver makes that metal the most promising of natural resource investments. You can find Butler's commentary at GoldSeek's companion site, SilverSeek, here:

E-gold gets tough on crime

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By Kim Zetter
Wired magazine
Monday, December 11, 2006

http://www.wired.com/news/technology/0,72278-0.html?tw=rss.technology

The founder of PayPal competitor e-gold has grown tired of the government characterizing his business as a haven for money launderers, terrorists, child pornographers and credit card thieves.

So a year after the Department of Justice raided his offices, Douglas Jackson, president of Gold and Silver Reserve, which operates e-gold, has been wading deep into his customer transaction logs to identify and fight back against people who misuse his system. In the last month, he's blocked about 2,000 accounts from his system, and he's voluntarily turned over detailed account and transaction histories to federal law enforcement.

Bloomberg story finds many establishment advisers favorable to gold

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11:29p ET Sunday, December 10, 2006

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

The Bloomberg story appended here is a bit surprising for being so favorable to gold and candidly laying out the role of central banks in supplying the market amid diminishing mine production. Too many establishment people are quoted here, along with GATA's friend Frank Holmes, for it to be completely disinformation. Maybe the word is getting around.

China trip is meant to coordinate dollar devaluation, economist says

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U.S. Dollar Facing
Imminent Collapse?

Jerome R. Corsi
WorldNetDaily.com
Sunday, December 10, 2006

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=53311

Even as the stock market is hitting new record highs almost every day, the Federal Reserve and Treasury Department are quietly coordinating a devaluation of the dollar that the Bush administration hopes will be a slow decline rather than a dollar collapse.

Goldman hires Amaranth traders

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Goldman Hires Amaranth Team
As the Street Woos Hedge Funds

By Henny Sender
The Wall Street Journal
Saturday, December 9, 2006

In another sign of Wall Street's intense interest in hedge funds, brokerage firm Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is hiring 17 members of the team that traded credit for the now-defunct Amaranth Advisors LLC, according to people familiar with the matter.

The group will become part of the alternative-asset-management business at Goldman Sachs Asset Management, which houses the Wall Street firm's hedge-fund investments and has $139 billion of its $629 billion in total assets under management.

Oil producers shifting out of dollar

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By Haig Simonian, Javier Blas, and Carola Hoyos
Financial Times, London
Sunday, December 10, 2006

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/277471c2-8889-11db-b485-0000779e2340,_i_rssPage=...

Oil-producing countries have reduced their exposure to the dollar to the lowest level in two years and shifted oil income into euros, yen, and sterling, according to new data from the Bank for International Settlements.

Iran's parliament said to favor switching from dollars to euros

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From Islamic Republic News Agency
Saturday, December 9, 2006

http://www.irna.ir/en/news/view/menu-236/0612095743145955.htm

The Islamic Consultative Assembly (Majlis) is agreable to replacing the US dollar with the euro in Iranian foreign transactions, a member of the Majlis Planning and Budget Commission, Morteza Tamaddon, said Saturday.

Speaking to IRNA, the MP said the move is part of Iran's general policy toward the West, as dependence on the US currency would have negative consequences for Iran in the long term.

Dollar may rise even as U.S. economy weakens, research firm says

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Dollar may gain even with US hard landing: Lombard

By Steven C. Johnson
Reuters
Friday, December 8, 2006

http://today.reuters.co.uk/news/articlenews.aspx?type=allBreakingNews&st...

NEW YORK -- The dollar will rise in 2007 even as the U.S. economy slows sharply, a top U.K. research firm said on Friday, as Asian central banks continue buying greenbacks to keep their currencies down and their exports competitive.