Reporting from New York — Stocks have been in a holding pattern ahead of a week that may provide important clues about American corporate earnings and Europe's ability to deal with its debt problems.
The Dow Jones industrial average opened almost unchanged after French President Nicholas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel met today in Berlin.
During a news conference, the two committed to defending the euro, which has been falling in value in recent weeks as investors worry that the currency will not be able to withstand the continent's economic problems. The euro has risen in value against the dollar in trading today, after three days of declines.
Sarkozy said candidly during the joint news conference: "I won't tell you that we have resolved the problems."
The more important summit comes later in the week when the officials of the European Central Bank meet to consider whether to drop its interest rate or step up its bond-buying program to help struggling banks.