Good Sunday morning, and welcome to another edition of 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.

It was the third straight up week on the markets, and, before Friday's selloff, it took the Nasdaq Composite back to flat on the year. The major indices have soared off the early-March lows, putting together the sort of double-digit 20% rally that we have seen rarely since the Great Depression. (See table below.) This sort of upward move is what I had been writing about for some time in this column, so it should come as no surprise that the relief rally has been as long and strong as it has.

Where do we go from here, however? While I'd been convinced we would penetrate the November lows and then see a relief rally, now we are at much more of a crossroads. It is possible that we follow a sawtooth pattern into the summer as we digest bad data at these levels. It is also possible that we slide backward into the recent lows, but that will almost certainly require bad news from the banks plus layoffs ticking up closer to the million-a-month level. The latter is entirely possible, of course, and the savageness of the relief rally shows how confident the bears had become that all stocks were one-way trades to zero.

For now, however, I'm remaining cautious. Having had a standout rally, we have a lot of data and gain digesting to do, and I suggest people watch this process instead of expecting further gains. News catalysts aside, we need to see the market become adept at shrugging off the bad before I become more convinced that things have permanently changed. More broadly, of course, nothing has changed on consumer balance sheets, so we should not be looking for there to be a recovery catalyst.

Turning to economic news, next week we have the G20 Summit (which will almost certainly be a disappointment), the March employment report and March service-sector data from ISM. March ADP employment data and the ISM's gauge of U.S. manufacturing are due on Wednesday. On Tuesday, we will see the January S&P/Case-Shiller home price index.

As for earnings, the first-quarter earnings season begins in another week, so take a brief break from earnings news.

Finally, here are some articles and papers worth reading:

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  • Transcript of Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner on ABC's 'This Week.' (ABC)
  • Barron's picks Amazon (AMZN) and deep-water drillers, but pans semiconductors. (Barron's)
  • Human psychology and the economy -- An economic bestiary. (The Economist)
  • Study predicts 50% cut in company free cash flow. (CFO)
  • Lululemon's (LULU) plan for lean times. (Globe and Mail)
  • WTO sees 9% global trade decline in 2009 as recession strikes. (WTO)
  • Profile of "civil heretic" Freeman Dyson. (The New York Times)
  • Was the bailout constitutional? (The Washington Post)
  • 10 Questions for Alan Mulally. Time)
  • Will April by the cruelest month? Some bears think so. (New York Post)
  • Inflation looms over deflation risk. (FT)
  • G20 Grand Bargain looks distant prospect. (Reuters)
  • Conflict minerals from DR Congo the new blood diamonds? (Fortune)
  • Fresh writedowns, more job cuts seen at UBS (UBS). (Reuters)
  • Emerging from U.S. bankruptcy gets even tougher. (Reuters)
  • Latin America likely faces worst shock ever. (Reuters)
  • Did Goldman (GS) Goose Oil? (Forbes)
  • 30-year loan rates hit record low 4.85%. (SFGate)
  • Barack Obama's learning curve -- Learning the hard way. (The Economist)
  • Reviving the shadow banking system. (Globe and Mail)
  • Zeroflation: Winners and losers. (Telegraph)
  • 'Gold price to fall below $900.' (Telegraph)
  • Investors 'ready to return to stock market.' (Telegraph)
  • Overlooking the Investor Mind-Set, at Society's Peril. (The New York Times/Shiller)
  • Hiding a Mountain Of Debt. (The Washington Post/Broder)
  • Financial Instability, Reserves, and Central Bank Swap Lines in the Panic of 2008. (NBER)
  • China's Exchange Rate Policy and Fiscal Expansion. (SIEPR)
  • Only a united front at the London G20 can save the world from ruin. (Telegraph)
  • The End of Excess: Is This Crisis Good for America? (Time)
  • Singapore did the right things, but it hasn't worked out anyway. (Time)
  • False hopes that recovery is around the corner. (Times Online)

Know what you own: This article mentions banking stocks Goldman Sachs and UBS. Other stocks in this sector include JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Morgan Stanley (MS) and Wells Fargo (WFC).

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?


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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.