That's just it, they've become pawns of the Fed now, after S&P got fined by the Fed, big-time for their downgrade last debt-ceiling go-'round and impasse. The Fed's big investigation into them and consequent fine, was retribution for their downgrading. Who's to trust these ratings agencies now, after they rubber-stamped AAA tranches of junk-paper, then when one does speak-out, they get hit by the Gov. so hard, that now they're afraid to say anything negative!
Can't trust anybody in today's Market hardly. Have to use your own, good, common horse-sense; In fact, the main reason I have been attracted to gold, isn't b/c of our current shut-down and debt-ceiling talks (although I did think we'd see much more positive upward action in gold than we have!), but rather, I'm positive on gold b/c of the Fed, and their magic act of having to unwind $3-trillion in securities when interest rates start to spike! Every one thinks that gold will get taken into a downward spiral when the Fed tapers, and it my, knee-jerk-wise. but seeing that 10-year jump like a hot-potato "just on Fed talk of tapering", tells me that when the process is begun in earnest, we're going to get some sky-high interest rates and consequent inflation. That's my bet on gold here. All the rest of the economic drama adds to the worth of an alternative currency such as gold, but sky-high-interest rates coming, a soggy job-Market, and tons of treasuries to unwind---all tell me gold can have some strong value going forward.
We'll see, it's a bit of gamble and bet , but never before has the Fed's balance-sheet been this big, while the over-all economy really hasn't improved to absorb the Fed-action once wind-down takes place. I really think all hecks going to brake loose, and the stock market will have to find a natural equilibrium, to reflect the true state of the over-all economy, not some "juiced-up, pumped-up, steroid Fed action"!