As President Obama continues ‘Gloat Tour 2010′ celebrating HIS victory on getting health-care reform passed into law, the White House is busy spinning the latest economic news. Today, Obama will appear in North Carolina, trumpeting HIS stimulus package and all the great jobs created by it. Some economic indicators would seem to support HIS claims. Today’s jobs numbers claim 162,000 new jobs created in March. However, about 100,000 of those are temporary jobs for Census workers. First Quarter numbers seem to show a 5% increase in GDP, as well as a 4% increase in the Dow Jones. However, inflation is also increasing, both the CPI rate for consumers and the industrial wholesale prices. On top of that, private sector job markets show an increase in lay-off and in planned lay-offs from ADP and the Challenger-Gray & Christmas, Inc. reports, about 67% higher!

Still, the unemployment rate remains set in stone at 9.7%. One has to wonder how this can be, since today’s numbers were expected to show 190,000 new jobs, instead of the 162,000 actually created. Also, ADP’s numbers showed a loss of some 23,000 jobs when the ‘experts expected an increase of 40,000 private sector jobs. Call me silly but I would classify that as a net loss, maybe of 63,000. Has the Obama administration decided that an unemployment rate of 9.7% is politically safe number and has frozen it as such?

My guess is YES! Where are we really? If you ignore the U.S. Census temp jobs, the actual unemployment rate is probably in the neighborhood of 10.2% to 10.5%. If this cheery news isn’t cheery enough, I have more. We got news last week that municipal bonds are being dumped by the wealthy. Fans of the comedy film, “Airplane” will recall the scene at the end when Robert Stack was babbling about how municipal bonds were the best investment around. Not so anymore. Since mid-2007, ‘muni’ sales have been slipping. Another reason why state and local governments are trapped in an economic pincer squeeze.

The 1st Quarter has not been a good one for U.S. Treasuries, either. As detailed here before, the yield rates have been inching upwards as fewer takers are buying them. The Federal Reserve, who auctions the T-bills, has stopped reporting who is buying them. This is to cover the fact that the Fed themselves have become the principal purchaser. In early March, they bought 70% of all U.S. Treasuries sold, up from 40% in January.

Speaking of Federal Reserve cover-ups, we also learned this week that the New York Fed Bank has been ‘warehousing’ toxic assets by the larger investment banks, allowing them to post numbers that look better than they ought to be. They’ve been doing this since at least 2003, when Timothy Geithner was named head of the New York Federal Reserve Bank. “Turbo-Tax-Tim” is now Obama’s Treasury Secretary. How wonderful it is when the central bank that Congress grants oversight of the banking and monetary system to is owned by private banks. Sort of akin to somebody on a diet putting a padlock on their fridge and then keeping the key handy.

More news emerged this week on market manipulation as well! The U.S. Justice Department is targeting two major investments firms, J.P. Morgan-Chase and UBS, for rigging the Muni-Fund market. Likewise, JPM-Chase has also been implicated in a scheme to rig the silver market. A London broker, Andrew Maguire, who blew the whistle in November of 2009, told the CFTC how JP Morgan-Chase was heavy in shorting silver thanks to their acquisition of Bear Sterns. They, as well as HSBC, were also named by Maguire as manipulating the gold market. Speaking of gold…

More news broke this past week about Gordon Brown’s ‘gold bottom’. In 1999, as Tony Blair’s chancellor, Brown dumped half of the UK’s sovereign gold reserves, a mere 395 TONS, on the market at discounted prices in an effort to keep gold prices down. Most was sold at prices ranging from $256 to $296 per ounce. Tony Blair, who now oddly enough works for JP Morgan-Chase, went along with Brown’s decision, despite warnings by the Bank of England. Oh, but Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPM-Chase, asked that folks stop picking on them. Yes, it’s been another terrific week of rigged markets, phony optimism and high-level corruption. Have a great Easter!