Good Sunday afternoon and welcome to Weekend Reading. First a look back at the week that just finished, then a look forward to the week ahead, and, finally, a summary of articles and research papers worth reading.

We hung on and managed to turn in two up weeks in a row on the major indices. That was the first time that has happened across the S&P 500, Nasdaq and Dow since last May. (See chart below.) Granted, we're still way down on the year, and nothing important has changed with respect to the likelihood of more losses later in the year, but investors should take gains where they can get them.

Looking ahead to next week, all eyes will be on the Treasury Department's latest plan for getting toxic assets off bank balance sheets. According to weekend reports, the newest iteration of the program will be unveiled on Monday, and the early response has been uneven at best. There will be lots of other data next week, but the big thing will be reaction to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and his plan. There also may be some reaction to tonight's Obama interview on CBS' "60 Minutes," where the president apparently says Geithner's job is safe.

Turning to economic indicators, next week will see data on sales of new- and existing-homes, plus a final reading on fourth-quarter gross domestic product and numbers on weekly jobless claims.

As for earnings, we will see reports from Walgreen ( WAG), Tiffany ( TIF) and Best Buy ( BBY), among others.

Finally, here are some articles and papers worth reading:

Editor's note: To access some of these stories, registration or a subscription may be required. Please check the individual links for each site's policy.

  • Credit union victim of soured mortgage market. ( Reuters)
  • The Hedge Fund Culture Clash. ( IDD)
  • Barron's picks Wellpoint (WLP) and pans Chinese consumer spending. ( Barron's)
  • Tips for doomsday investing. ( Forbes)
  • How China sees the world. ( The Economist)
  • The big freeze in credit markets. ( CFO)
  • In London, the party's over and the hangover is setting in. ( Globe and Mail)
  • Harley-Davidson (HOG), You're Not Getting Any Younger. ( The New York Times)
  • Natural Gas, Suddenly Abundant, Is Cheaper. ( The New York Times)
  • Madoff employee breaks the silence. ( DailyBeast)
  • How AIG (AIG) Became Too Big to Fail. ( Time)
  • The Way of All Debt. ( The New York Review ofBooks)
  • Are Treasury Bonds a Bubble That May Someday Burst? ( The New York Times)
  • California Bringing $4B in munis to market. ( BondBuyer)
  • Portfolio magazine thin to the point of disappearing. ( NewYork Post)
  • China role in revival is limited. ( ShanghaiDaily)
  • Red Flags That Muni Investors Can't See. ( The New York Times)
  • Geithner Puts Finishing Touches on Plan to Revive U.S. Banks. ( Bloomberg)
  • As recession deepens, more Americans go fishing. ( Reuters)
  • The fiscal vacuum at the heart of monetary systems. ( Buiter/ FT)
  • The state-sponsored shadow banking system. ( Reuters)
  • Washington Mutual (WAMUQ.PK) sues FDIC for over $13 billion. ( Reuters)
  • Roll-Ups DIP Their Toes. ( IDD)
  • Google (GOOG) search frequency and stock returns. ( SSRN)
  • Hedge Funds May Get AIG Cash. ( The Wall Street Journal)
  • Madoff's Personal Messenger, William Nasi, Offers Window IntoFirm. (The Wall Street Journal)
  • No Return to Normal for the economy. ( WashingtonMonthly)
  • State of Starbucks (SBUX): Inside Its Existential Crisis. ( The Washington Post)
  • Debt Literacy, Financial Experiences, and Overindebtedness. ( NBER)

RealMoney Barometer Poll
1 What would best describe your stance heading into the coming week of trading?
Bullish
Bearish
Neutral
2 Which of these sectors do you think is set to move up in the coming week?
3 Which of these sectors do you think is set to move down in the coming week?

View the results without voting

At time of publication, Kedrosky had no positions in stocks mentioned, although holdings can change at any time.

Dr. Paul Kedrosky is a former highly ranked sell-side technology equity analyst, and he currently runs a technology finance institute at the University of California, San Diego. He is also a venture partner with Ventures West, an institutional venture capital firm with more than $400 million under management. He maintains a widely read blog called Infectious Greed.

Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. While Kedrosky cannot provide investment advice or recommendations, he appreciates your feedback; click here to send him an email.

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