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Photo: Wikimedia Commons

After weeks and weeks of intense news, it feels like the first day of summer.But first, the scoreboard:

Dow: +2.12
NASDAQ: -11.74
S&P 500:+0.94

And now, the top stories:

  • Really, it was very quiet. After yesterday’s losing session stocks fell more after hours, and Japan drifted lower, but there wasn’t too much to report on that front.
  • Everyone was kind of bracing for the worst in Europe, after Merkel and Sarkozy failed to deliver on anything yesterday, but in the end — despite some intense initial selling — markets closed higher.
  • And in the US, there wasn’t much economic news of major significance. The Producer Price Index came in hot, possibly driving another nail into the coffin of QE3, but nobody seemed much to care. Stocks were surging early in the day, with the Dow at one point up over 100, though that faded fairly early.
  • Most of the action was corporate: Tech got really slammed after Dell’s bad earnings, which is why the NASDAQ was the big loser on the day. Counteracting that were solid earnings from Target and Staples. A huge winner on the day: Interdigital, another company with a pile of patents that could get bids from Microsoft or Apple in the wake of Google’s purchase of Motorola.
  • Meanwhile, for something different, here’s a discussion on the public’s bizarre obsession with inflation.

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