Good Morning,

Most markets went into resting mode overnight, following a day that witnessed value realignments of a significant size. Stock markets paused, the dollar recovered some lost ground, and gold continued to track on either side of the $900 marker. Almost three-quarters of the sources surveyed by Bloomberg expect a bounce in gold prices for next week. Of course, these last two weeks were supposed to have recorded a similarly expected rise in values. Hulbert's surveyed hard money newsletter crowd had promised as much to its readership. Darn manipulators, they just cannot seem to get enough.

Friday's news and market radar traces will likely be all about the US jobs numbers, the ECB's buying time before activating 'other' measure to pull Europe out of its downward economic spiral, and -maybe-about Mr. Kim and his surrogate phallic symbol taking to the skies. Wait, it's a...communications satellite. Yes, sure. Whatever it is that he is trying to communicate. Maybe it will be a weekend event. The possible sanctions coming Mr. Kim's way should he go on with the show, well, they might last longer than a weekend.

New York spot gold dealings opened with minor losses of $1.50 and were quoted at $902.50 per ounce. Participants were awaiting the aforementioned employment figures and were likely factoring in the idea that the numbers will show as bad a situation as any seen in a quarter of a century. The greenback still managed a small bounce ahead of the data, and stock index futures were stuck in 'hover' mode in advance of the statistical release.

Oil prices also took a breather this morning, showing only a modest drop to $52.25 per barrel, while remaining fairly buoyant as recovery hopes work their way into speculators' perceptions. Silver fell a dime, to start at $12.82 per ounce, while platinum climbed $2 to $1157 and palladium fell asleep at $221 per ounce, showing no change. A close under the $900 mark today might usher in a period of difficulties for bullion.

Got money? Good. Got money in, say, Gibraltar? Liechtenstein? Costa Rica? That may not be so good. The times, they are a-changin' sang Dylan 45 years ago. Now, they are a-changin' for the worse if you happen to be bent on hiding your stash offshore. Don't say you did not see this one coming? The BBC says this morning that:

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has published its blacklist of non-cooperative tax havens. Costa Rica, Malaysia, the Philippines and Uruguay are the countries listed as not having agreed to tax standards. The list is part of efforts agreed at the G20 summit to clamp down on havens.

There is also a list of 38 places that have agreed to improve standards but not yet done so, such as Gibraltar, Liechtenstein, Andorra and San Marino. On Thursday, G20 leaders agreed to take sanctions against tax havens using the OECD list as its basis. In their communique, they agreed, to take action against non-cooperative jurisdictions, including tax havens.

We stand ready to deploy sanctions to protect our public finances and financial systems. The era of banking secrecy is over. Angel Gurria, secretary general of the OECD, said that the G20 summit had helped to focus minds on the issue of tax havens. We've had more progress in the last two weeks on this matter than we've had in the last 10 or 12 years, he told the BBC. He added that the progress had come despite the leaders not specifying what sanctions they would take.

[Non-cooperating countries] will move because they know the question of sanctions, however ill-defined that was, is going to affect them somehow. The Philippines is already reported to be taking steps to remove itself from the blacklist. The Philippine government would take the necessary steps to ensure we meet their expectations, Trade Secretary Peter Favila told the Associated Press news agency. It is really up to us to prove them wrong.

But wait, that is not all. A dirty laundry list of several Caribbean islands was also on the enforcement radar. Adding to the malaise of 'global' investors, Luxembourg and Switzerland made the middle tier of the list - being listed as 'grey.' Grey, and red - the new black. As in, blacklist.

A PROGRESS REPORT ON THE JURISDICTIONS SURVEYED BY THE OECD GLOBAL FORUM IN IMPLEMENTING THE INTERNATIONALLY AGREED TAX STANDARD 1 Progress made as at 2 nd April 2009 Jurisdictions that have substantially implemented the internationally agreed tax standard

Argentina Australia Barbados Canada China Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Finland France

Germany Greece Guernsey Hungary Iceland Ireland Isle of Man Italy Japan Jersey

Korea Malta Mauritius Mexico Netherlands New Zealand Norway Poland Portugal Russian Federation

Seychelles Slovak Republic South Africa Spain Sweden Turkey United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States US Virgin Islands

Jurisdictions that have committed to the internationally agreed tax standard, but have not yet substantially implemented

Jurisdiction

Year of Commitment

Number of Agreements

Jurisdiction

Year of Commitment

Number of Agreements

Tax Havens

Andorra Anguilla Antigua and Barbuda Aruba Bahamas Bahrain Belize Bermuda British Virgin Islands CaymanIslands Cook Islands Dominica Gibraltar Grenada Liberia Liechtenstein

2009 2002 2002 2002 2002 2001 2002 2000 2002 2000 2002 2002 2002 2002 2007 2009

(0) (0) (7) (4) (1) (6) (0) (3) (3) (8) (0) (1) (1) (1) (0) (1)

Marshall Islands Monaco Montserrat Nauru NetherlandsAntilles Niue Panama 

St Kitts and Nevis St Lucia

St Vincent & Grenadines

Samoa

San Marino

Turks and Caicos Islands

Vanuatu

2007 2009 2002 2003 2000 2002 2002 2002 2002 2002 2002 2000 2002 2003

(1) (1) (0) (0) (7) (0) (0) (0) (0) (0) (0) (0) (0) (0)

Other Financial Centres

Austria

Belgium

  Brunei Chile

2009 2009 2009 2009

(0) (1) (5) (0)

Guatemala Luxembourg Singapore Switzerland

2009 2009 2009 2009

(0) (0) (0) (0)

 

Jurisdictions that have not committed to the internationally agreed tax standard

Jurisdiction

Number of Agreements

Jurisdiction

Number of Agreements

Costa Rica

Malaysia (Labuan)

(0) (0)

Philippines

Uruguay

(0) (0)

Can we interest you in a passport from Domenica? It's only $700 a copy. In brief, consider the above a public service announcement. Practically every country you have heard of at hard money conferences -as being nice stashing places for your dough- are on the list. Be afraid, be very afraid. This time, everyone is in on the globo-cop game. Oh, and hats off to James Turk and Goldmoney, not only for having adopted a safe model for their custody business, but for having the wisdom to domicile it in Jersey.