Stock market averages continued down for their third week to levels last cleared in January. The S&P average, which peaked 13% above its January 3rd open is now up only 3.8% trimming more than a trillion in market value in May. The Vanguard Total Market is up 2.4% year to date. Yields on the 10-year US Treasury have tumbled from about 4% just two years ago when Greece's debt crisis began to 1.73% today. The 7-10-year Treasury is up 21% (not counting interest) over the same period.

After falling 5.5% from its recent peak in mid-October the S&P 500 roared back this week with a near 3% rally. A steady flow of good news soothed recent worries that the recovery was growing anemic. Ford led the good news parade waving a banner quarter of almost a billion dollars in profits. Tool-maker Stanley Works agreed to buy Black & Decker for $4.5 billion and the next day Warren Buffett announced that he was in the railroad business with a $26 billion “all-in” bet on the US economy purchase of Burlington Northern. What was bad news for Mr. Obama and Democrats was good news for investors as Tuesday’s Republican victories suggested the possibility of future gridlock and perhaps some near-term restraint in big government growth and spending.