The U.S. dollar gained strength against other major currencies as concern over a global economic slowdown grew.
The Federal Reserve met and left interest rates unchanged.
Following a peak of $147 last month, oil dropped to its lowest level since April at $ 115.20 a barrel.
The stock market gained with the Dow, the Nasdaq and the S & P 500 all up for the week, with the Nasdaq leading the way up 4.5%. Lower oil prices, a stronger dollar, and several positive earnings reports drove the market higher. The S & P 500 closed above a previous major resistance point of 1289 on heavy volume. This is a good sign for the market.
Turmoil continued in the banking sector with Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae reporting worse than expected second quarter losses. Bank of America announced they are being subpoenaed by federal and state agencies about auction-rate securities it sold. Citigroup and UBS agreed to pay fines and buy back billions worth of auction-rate securities. It is interesting to note that among all of this, the stock market rose for the week. This is another good sign.