Updated from 9:42 a.m. EST
Traders of U.S. stocks were taking profits Wednesday morning after the market logged impressive gains during the previous session. Investors were also sizing up their prospects following
victory in Tuesday's presidential election.
Dow Jones Industrial Average
was shedding 86 points at 9540, and the
was lower by 6.9 points at 999. The
dropped 19 points to 1762.
Ahead of Wednesday's session, several corporate headlines were detracting from buying sentiment. Aircraft maker
announced that its 787 Dreamliner program was suffering delays because it needs to replace improperly attached fasteners on the new jets.
In the technology space, Internet company
announced on its blog that it would end an advertising agreement with fellow Web portal
. Google cited government regulators' and some advertisers' concern about the agreement as reason for the termination.
As for financial firms,
, jointly owned by
, reported a widened third-quarter loss due to setbacks in its mortgage business.
, meanwhile, cut its quarterly dividend 75%, citing a goal of maintaining a strong financial position.
Another day brought additional earnings statements.
reported a slight drop in third-quarter earnings and reduced its 2008 earnings forecasts because of additional restructuring it expects to incur.
reported a third-quarter loss that was substantially wider than a year ago. A bit later Wednesday, fellow insurer
is expected to report.
announced earnings that increased 29% and said it would reduce production for the fourth quarter thanks to an economic downturn.
Solar panel maker
reduced its fourth-quarter and 2009 earnings figures, saying a strengthening dollar vs. the euro would hurt its results.
Shifting to economic data, Automatic Data Processing reported that the U.S. lost 157,000 jobs in October. Economists had forecast a loss of 100,000 jobs. The ADP figure for September was revised to a loss of 26,000 jobs from an initial read of 8,000.
Writing for is
blog, Tony Crescenzi, chief bond market strategist for Miller Tabak, said that ADP's employment readings have in the past few months registered fewer job losses than the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which is set to report its October employment data on Friday. "These data will help further prepare the financial markets for the possibility of a weak jobs report," he wrote. He said the next step for the market is to assess the extent and duration of the economic downturn.
The Institute for Supply Management also reported that its services index showed a reading of 44.4 for October, down from 50.2 in September. Economists were looking for the index to register at 47.
As for commodities, crude oil was losing $1.72 to $68.81 a barrel. Gold was adding $2.70 at $760 an ounce.
Longer-dated U.S. Treasury securities were rising in price. The 10-year was up 6/32, yielding 3.7%, and the 30-year was gaining 22/32 to yield 4.15%. The dollar was falling vs. its major foreign competitors.
Overseas, European exchanges, including the FTSE in London and the DAX in Frankfurt, were mostly trading lower. In
, Japan's Nikkei and Hong Kong's Hang Seng closed on the upside.