Companies are raising dividends, but continue to hold big slugs of cash.  (Crossing Wall Street, ibid)

No matter how you look at it earnings surprises (and guidance) look strong.  (Bespoke, ibid also Markets Blog)

Still no reversal in the number of bears.  (Bespoke)

Are ETFs the cause of rising stock correlations?  (FT Alphaville)

ETFs and high-frequency traders simply don’t care about valuations.”  (FT Alphaville)

Josh Brown, “Don’t allow the sudden popularity of “your” stock make you hate it.  Be emotionally possessive about something else, not your investments.”  (The Reformed Broker)

“Sometimes your trades just don’t work out.”  (SMB Training)

The historical performance of August.  (MarketSci Blog)

If gold reverses course it is going to hurt a lot of bandwagon jumpers.  (MarketBeat)

A look at the hedge fund ETFs.   (ETFdb)

Arguments for a second half slowdown.  (Calculated Risk)

Citigroup (C) did all right in selling Phibro.  (DealBook)

Goldman’s fund of fund business is doing just fine, thank you.  (Absolute Return+Alpha)

Don’t confuse strategy with outcome.  (CBS Moneywatch)

How to avoid a (trading) wipeout.  (The Crosshairs Trader)

What if there is no risk-free rate?  (SSRN via CXOAG)

Who is likely to buy what at the BP (BP) “garage sale.” (DealBook)

Um, where did the oil slick go?  (NYTimes)

Goldman Sachs (GS) (and Citigroup (C)) have already found a loophole around limits on proprietary trading.  (FBN, Bloomberg, Points and Figures)

If the US is the new Japan, keep an eye on leading economic indicators.  (The Money Game also Financial Armageddon)

Bill Gross notes the challenges of deleveraging in a world fraught with declining world population growth rates.  (The Money Game, Street Sweep also Daily Intel)

The asset-backed securities market has re-opened, albeit tentatively.  (DailyFinance, FT Alphaville

Debating the value of mortgage securitization.  (Economix)

How much farther do home prices have to fall?  (Big Picture)

How far will the home ownership rate fall?  (Calculated Risk, Bloomberg)

The steel market is soft.  (NYTimes)

Dueling opinions of the durable goods number.  (Kid Dynamite also Calculated Risk, EconomPic Data)

Arguments for a second half slowdown.  (Calculated Risk)

Continued pressure on state and local governments.  (WashingtonPost, Bloomberg)

What is going to be the next big driver of American economic growth?  (DJ Market Talk)

A bull market for financial regulators turned lobbyist.  (Big Picture)

China is not seriously considering raising interest rates.  (China Financial Markets)

George Soros is buying a stake in the Bombay Stock Exchange.  (FT, FT Alphaville)

Four reasons to believe in Brazil.  (Economist)

Middle class Brazilians are beginning to invest in stocks.  (beyondbrics)

The ETF industry has discovered Brazil and provides a number of ways to invest in this BRIC country.  (AR Screencast)

Google (GOOG) wants to take Facebook on.  (WSJ also Bloomberg)

Disney (DIS) is entering the social gaming business in a big way.  (Media Decoder, GigaOM)

Even the most defensible business moats eventually get spanned. (The Psy-Fi Blog)

Why StockTwits is important.  (SMB Training)

Why don’t networks broadcast all the pilots they paid for?  (Freakonomics)

Comedy MVPs since 1975.  (kottke)

There are now a number of ways to follow Abnormal Returns including:  @ARupdates, free e-mails:  AR ClassicAR Energy, AR Options, the Abnormal Returns widget, our daily screencasts, and Abnormal Returns TV.