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02.02.2011 18:19

Dow +4.88 at 12045.04, Nasdaq +0.28 at 2751.47, S&P -2.59 at 1305.00

A lackluster follow up to the prior session's surge has left the major equity averages to trade in mixed fashion all session. Yesterday the stock market rode a strong bid to its best level in more than two years, but many broad market participants have opted to take a bit of a breather today. That said, there hasn't been any concerted effort to take profits. Only a slightly positive response was made to the latest ADP Employment Change, which indicated that 187,000 private payrolls were added in January. The report had little lasting effect, though. Earnings have also failed to inspire action in the broad market. Among the more widely held names, Whirlpool (WHR 82.69, -2.73) and AFLAC (AFL 57.13, -1.40) both came short of the consensus earnings estimate, but Boston Scientific (BSX 6.77, -0.36) and Time Warner (TWX 34.99, +2.68) both beat on the bottom line. Time Warner complemented its report with news of an 11% dividend increase. Electronic Arts (ERTS 17.90, +2.28) posted its own upside earnings surprise and added to its repurchase plan. Its shares have surged in response. That has helped prop up the tech sector, which is presently up 0.3%. Energy stocks make up the only other sector to sport a gain. They are up 0.2%, even though oil prices are now in the red after a strong start. Oil prices are currently down 0.6% to $90.25 per barrel. The dollar has turned higher after it had set a two-month low in the prior session. It is currently up 0.3% against a collection of competing currencies. Despite the lackluster action among stocks today, Treasuries have turned lower. That has the yield on the benchmark 10-year Note creeping closer to 3.50%, which was last touched in mid-December.

Market Focus

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  • Australian unemployment rate stable at 5.6% in June
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