A totally unbelievable end of the week filled with euphoria, tragedy, and a sense of impending doom.

But first, the scoreboard:

Dow: -46.47
NASDAQ: +23.42
S&P 500: +0.80

And now, the top stories:

  • We’ll break it down by themes. Obviously the day started with yesterday’s huge European bailout announcement. You can read all about it here, but the establishment of a more fiscally cohesive an flexible European bailout mechanism was initially treated with huge euphoria. However by the end of the European day that faded quite a bit.
  • In the US, the clock on the debt ceiling fight is rapidly ticking down, and there’s no progress. The number of suggestions is multiplying at the time they need to be narrowing. Congressmen on both sides of the aisle are angry about their leaders selling them out, and yet there’s nothing anyone has agreed upon. The bottom line: This is real. They might not get a deal done, potentially triggering a catastrophe.
  • The day also saw incredible tragedy in Norway. First a bomb struck a government area in Norway, and then a couple of hours later, a gunman attacked a youth camp on an island owned by the ruling labour party, killing 9 or 10. The details and motivations remain quite scarce, but it’s a national tragedy — one of the worst days in Norwegian history without a doubt.
  • There was some corporate news, most of it pretty underwhelming. GE reported fine earnings. Caterpillar reported mediocre earnings, and warned about growth in China. That helped drag down the Dow.
  • Bottom line: The market is still figuring that things will come together on the debt ceiling front next week and that it won’t all go blamo. It’s perhaps a dicey proposition ahead of a weekend where many people are leaving Washington.
  • Meanwhile, on the Europe front, check out the 20 banks praying that the bailouts work >

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