Stock Market News for January 25, 2012 - Market News

By Zacks Equity Research,

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In yet another calm trading session, markets were pulled slightly lower after Eurozone ministers rejected a bond swap offer from Greece's private creditors. While the Dow dropped lower and the S&P 500 reversed its five-day winning streak, Nasdaq added meager points after earnings from certain tech companies boosted sentiment.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) was down 0.3% and settled the day at 12,678.75. The Standard & Poor 500 (S&P 500) dropped 0.1% and closed yesterday's trading session at 1,314.65. The tech-laden Nasdaq Composite managed to find a seat in the green, added a mere 0.09% to finish at 2,786.64. The fear-gauge CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) moved up 1.3% to settle at 18.91. For 52% of the advancing stocks on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), 44% of the stocks moved down. The remaining 4% of the stocks were left unchanged. Total volume on the NYSE was 3.7 billion shares, slightly lower than average.

There have been days when the three-digit movement had almost become a trend for Dow. However, over the past few days, the blue-chip index's movement can be termed as relatively calm. The Dow has now had its longest calm period since April last year, moving within 100 points in the last 13 trading days. Coming to its fellow benchmark, the S&P 500 dropped into the red zone for the first time since its five-day winning streak. It is also just the third time that the S&P 500 dropped points this year. All the three benchmarks have been able to maintain a good run this year, and the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq are up 3.8%, 4.5% and 7%, respectively, so far in 2012.

Yesterday, investors were jittery about the economic situation in Greece. If Greece fails to secure the next bailout package from international lenders, the nation will be unable to make its bond payments in March. The debt write-down deal is an absolute pre-requisite for Greece to receive the $168 billion bailout package from the European Union ( EU ) and the International Monetary Fund ( IMF ). However, things looked gloomy on that front as news spread that eurozone ministers had rejected the bond swap offer from private creditors. The ministers believed the offer from the private creditors was insufficient and they now have to come up with an alternative plan to restructure the country's debt. The situation remained chaotic with fears escalating that Greece is closer to a default.

While cross-Atlantic tension surely made its effects felt, some market onlookers believed that it did not make a big impact. Benchmarks too did not fluctuate by huge margins and investors also had the earnings results to concentrate on. Investors received a mixed set of results yesterday. Important companies like Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ ) and The Travelers Companies, Inc. (NYSE: TRV ) failed to beat the Street's estimates and their shares were down 1.6% and 3.8%, respectively. On the other hand, Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ ) surpassed expectations but its outlook dampened sentiment and the stock closed flat. McDonald's Corporation (NYSE: MCD ) beat analysts estimates but the company's shares still dropped 2.2%. Meanwhile E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co. (NYSE: DD ), managed to beat earnings estimates but missed revenue expectations.

On the tech front, Western Digital's (NYSE: WDC ) shares jumped 6.3% and the company emerged as one of the biggest gainers among the S&P 500 after reporting an impressive quarterly performance. Texas Instruments Incorporated (NASDAQ: TXN ) disappointed investors after its revenues, earnings and margins moved down on a yearly basis. The company's shares slumped 2.0%. Meanwhile, investors continued to await results from tech-giant Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL ) and Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO ), scheduled to report post the closing bell.


APPLE INC ( AAPL ): Free Stock Analysis Report
DU PONT ( EI ) DE ( DD ): Free Stock Analysis Report
JOHNSON & JOHNS (JNJ): Free Stock Analysis Report
MCDONALDS CORP (MCD): Free Stock Analysis Report
TRAVELERS COS (TRV): Free Stock Analysis Report
TEXAS INSTRS (TXN): Free Stock Analysis Report
VERIZON COMM (VZ): Free Stock Analysis Report
WESTERN DIGITAL (WDC): Free Stock Analysis Report
YAHOO! INC (YHOO): Free Stock Analysis Report
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Zacks Investment Research

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing US Markets
Referenced Stocks: AAPL , DD , EI , EU , IMF

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