With the dollar firming but gold lower, investors await Fed chief Bernanke's comments Wednesday.
In a hot market where the popular names can cost hundreds of dollars a share, the real potential may be in stocks that go for less than five bucks.
Investors are looking for direction ahead of data on inflation, housing and the labor market.
The metal is in danger of giving up all its gains since its mid-April low. Some talk has gold falling to $1,250 an ounce.
The overly battered sector is slowly lumbering toward a turnaround.
Still ahead Monday are April retail sales and business inventories.
US markets, after setting new highs Friday on the encouraging employment report, are set for a more cautious open Monday.
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Shares of Plug Power took a beating Tuesday after an analyst listed the fair value of the stock at 50 cents.
The Market Dispatches column has been discontinued. Here's where to find the latest stock and business news on MSN Money, and the latest from market writer Charley Blaine.
MONEY & POLITICS
Breaking up big banks is an untested solution to the too big to fail problem that attempts to isolate and dismantle large, troubled institutions while protecting the rest of the economy.
Even when they have a plan for their refund check from Uncle Sam, Americans often don't realize how they actually spend the windfall.
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