Updated from 11:41 a.m. EDT
This Is Getting Better( At 2:41 p.m. EDT) I'm too far behind with this whole blog notion. So 2004. This format just isn't what the people want. I understand that now. It took some time, but I've seen the light. Twitter. Or Twitter-like. That's the way to go. Everybody's doing it. Even Shaq. The whole send one line at a time thing, I get it. Reminds of the newswire work I was doing back in the mid-1990s, but I get it. So here goes. Enjoy the New and Improved Dow Watch. This isn't perfect, but you get the idea. The future is now.
Can't Really Complain About This( At 11:15 a.m. EDT) Merck ( MRK) missed estimates and cut its forecast. Sales fell short of expectations at IBM ( IBM). Caterpillar ( CAT) had a quarterly loss and projected a below-consensus full-year profit. DuPont's ( DD) outlook wasn't exactly inspiring. As for United Technologies ( UTX) and Coca-Cola ( KO), they met earnings estimates, while the revenue lines were a little light.
The result? The Dow opened slightly lower, gradually made its way to the flat line and recently turned higher. Two hours in to the session the index was tacking on 27 points at 7868. The stocks mentioned above were three up, three down. Not bad at all. Wasn't all good. Merck was the worst percentage decliner on the Dow, falling 4.9% to $23.99. Cat was dropping 3.8% to $29.34. At the same time though, United Tech and DuPont were better by 3.7%. The best of the 30 components was General Motors ( GM), higher by 5.4% at $1.75 following reports it could be in line for another $5 billion in government aid. Even so, that's still a tricky situation. Remember? At this point, the market day still has a long way to go, but if it holds its ground after Monday's selloff and this morning's not great, not terrible results, there's not going to be much to complain about.