The Dow is down this morning as we continue to wait for news about the fiscal cliff. A few stocks are defying the Dow's drop. At the halfway point of the trading day the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) was down 65 points (-0.50%) to 13,031. The S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC ) was down six points (-0.44%) to 1,412.
There were no economic releases this morning. The market is only reacting to the lack of real news about the fiscal cliff. The news of the hour is that President Obama has called the leaders of the House and Senate to the White House to discuss the fiscal cliff. I don't expect anything to get decided today, but am hopeful that Congress won't let the country go over the fiscal cliff. The House has agreed to hold a special session on Sunday afternoon by which time they hopefully will have come to some kind of agreement. The Motley Fool has created a special page that will be updated with all of our latest fiscal cliff coverage to help cut through the daily noise and give you only the information and analysis you need as an investor.
With no news about the fiscal cliff negotiations, it's no surprise that the market is down.
Today's Dow leader
Today's Dow leader is American Express (NYSE: AXP ) up 0.50% ($0.28) to $56.97. After being one of yesterday's worst performers perhaps Mr. Market thinks the sell-off was too much. American Express has had a banner 2012. Earlier in the year the company launched a new pre-paid debit card called BlueBird which opens up new markets for the typically mass-affluent-consumer-focused company. Consumers' have been doing better as the economy and the housing market slowly improved this year. The financial industry has been recovering along with them; you can see the progress in a recently compiled article on the FDIC's Quarterly Banking Profile. American Express' stock price has also been recovering to the levels it last saw in 2007, rising 21% year-to-date.