Another day of mixed data. Of course, Goldman blew out their earnings estimates so we went get into it. Economic news is weak once again, however, On the retail sales front the ICSC figures came in at -0.9% week over week and -0.7% year over year. The Rebook data was again weak with a -5.7% year over year decline. Retail sales came in at -0.2% after excluding autos and gasoline. During a normal week this data likely would have the S&P 500 off 1%, but investors are fixated on earnings and Goldman’s miraculous ability to print money out of taxpayer money. It’s amazing how wrong the analysts were on the Goldman numbers. If not for Meredith Whitney’s $4.64 last minute estimate we would have been forced to deem the entire community useless. Even more shocking is the fact that investors still celebrate when companies beat the estimates compiled from 20 people who literally have no clue what sort of profit anyone is going to report. Out of pure fun I ran some back of the napkin numbers – I came up with a $4.80 estimate yesterday while I was eating my lunch. Granted, my revenue estimate of $12.2B was off, but still a BILLION dollars closer than 95% of the analysts. Better yet, Goldman’s stock is up another 1% while reports come out that executives sold $700MM of stock recently. It’s amazing how inefficient the market is.