3 Stocks Putting the Brakes on the Market

Today has been a wild ride for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI  ) . After opening, it soon fell to a loss and then quickly bounced back -- but not all of the 30 components are in the green this afternoon. The Dow currently sits at 13,068 -- up 32 points, or 0.25% -- while United Technologies (NYSE: UTX  ) , American Express (NYSE: AXP  ) , and Kraft Foods (Nasdaq: KFT  ) are all down for the day.

After leading aerospace companies lower yesterday, conglomerate United Technologies is down again -- by 0.5% today. United has traded lower on four of the past five days. Year to date, United Technologies is up 6.59%, while the Dow is doing just slightly better at 6.87%. On the other hand, United's competitor Honeywell International is only up 5.74% for the year.

Credit card companies are all trading lower today, led by American Express, which is down 2%. The card companies may have more competition to worry about than just each other. With the iPhone 5's Sept. 12 press date imminent, plastic may soon become a thing of the past. Apple's Passbook and potential near-field communication payment systems may cut into credit card companies' profits.

Finally, Kraft Food is trading a shade lower today, down 0.1% after competitor Campbell Soup (NYSE: CPB  ) announced earnings yesterday. Even though the soup company beat expectations, gross margins fell, and the company expects costs to rise 4% this year. The higher input cost will ultimately affect the whole food industry. Each company will be forced to make a decision on whether to eat the cost or push it off on struggling U.S. consumers.

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Fool contributor Matt Thalman and The Motley Fool own shares of Apple, but no other company mentioned above. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Apple. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a write covered strangle position in American Express. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.


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