What's the Story Behind Today's Big Dow Bounce?

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI  ) may have stumbled this morning, but you can't keep a good index down.

Right now, the Dow trades a minuscule 0.1% above last night's closing level. One of the strongest midday bounces comes from Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ  ) , which went 2.8% in the red to set a fresh 52-week low before turning back for a 1.7% gain. John Chambers, CEO of fellow tech giant and Dow component Cisco Systems (Nasdaq: CSCO  ) , got the ball rolling last night when he said that HP has a "tough hand to play" and he's ready to "accelerate while they are struggling." The comeback looks like nothing more than investors forgetting about Chambers' incendiary comments.

The verbal attack didn't exactly help Cisco, either. That stock is down 1% right now, and it never traded above Tuesday's closing price. It's one of the five worst performers on the Dow today.

So that's the story behind today's fastest bounce. The biggest outright winners, though, come from the infrastructure sector.

Aircraft maker and defense contractor Boeing (NYSE: BA  ) leads the pack with a 1.4% gain, adding eight points to the Dow's total value. Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT  ) isn't far behind with a 0.7% gain, good for five Dow points. This flies in the face of mixed housing data and ever-growing concerns about the pan-European economy, but both stocks look cheap right now. The best time to pounce on high-quality stocks is when Mr. Market pays too much attention to short-term worries while ignoring rock-solid fundamentals. That's what's happening right here.

Chasing hot stocks is a good way to get burned. Saving is a long-term process, not an overnight miracle, and we believe that looking past news events and market cycles is often the best way to win for the average guy. We highlight three safe, stable large-cap companies that should thrive over time in a new research report from the Fool. You can access it free of charge today by just clicking here.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies mentioned. Check out Anders' holdings and bio, or follow him on Twitter and Google+. The Motley Fool owns shares of Cisco Systems. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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