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The Dow Jones (INDEX: ^DJI ) is sitting up 0.4% mid-day. That's a decent-sized gain, but it pales in comparison to the huge 1.86% jump in the Nasdaq (INDEX: ^IXIC ) . There's no subtlety to what's driving the difference: It's Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL ) .
The company accounts for roughly 18.6% of the Nasdaq, and is up 8.3% on the day, explaining most the Nasdaq's jump. In fact, the technology components in the Dow aren't having a great day. Both Cisco and Hewlett-Packard are flat. While in the green, Microsoft and Intel are both underperforming the Nasdaq benchmark. The fact is, Apple's report doesn't show huge growth across technology, it shows how Apple and companies aligned with it are dominating the technology industry and accounting for most of the growth in the space. Last quarter, IT earnings jumped about 17%, the best among any sector. However, back out Apple and they only grew 4%. My guess is the situation will look much the same once this quarter is fully reported.
Apple has brought on a series of selective gains across the tech space. Key supplier Cirrus Logic (Nasdaq: CRUS ) is following along at an 8.8% gain. Even OmniVision (Nasdaq: OVTI ) , which lost out on the main camera sensor for the latest iPhone, is seeing a dubious 7% jump today. Cirrus Logic reports tonight, and with the majority of its sales coming from Apple, it could give investors more insight into both companies' coming quarters.
In broader market news, the Fed issued an endorsement of the economy, saying a gradual recovery is around the corner while the near-term quarters will see "moderate" growth. The real market movement will likely come after 2 p.m. today when the Fed releases forecasts for growth, inflation, unemployment, and interest rates. Following that will be the always-scintillating press conference with Ben Bernanke.
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That's it for today's market checkup. If you're left scratching your head about how Apple's blowing away every expectation, look no further than the following statistic: In the past decade, emerging-market consumer spending grew 250%, leaving the growth rates of the U.S. and Europe in the dust. Not surprisingly, Apple's Chinese sales are what pushed it over the top in its incredible last quarter. If you're an investor scanning the world for opportunities, look no further than our new report: "3 Companies Set to Dominate the World." In it, Fool analysts select three companies with international growth opportunities that are simply stunning. The report is free, but won't be available forever, so get your copy by clicking here today!