Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

The stock market is down today as financial and technology stocks continued their big fall from Friday. As of 1:30 p.m. EST, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) was down 32 points to 15,847. The S&P 500 (SNPINDEX:^GSPC) was down nine points to 1,781.

Financial stocks are leading the stock market's drop today. On the Dow, the drop is being led by largest component Visa (NYSE:V), which is down 2.38% to $216.03. The payment processor reports quarterly earnings on Thursday morning. Analysts expect the company to report earnings-per-share growth of 12% to $2.16 and revenue growth of 10% to $3.14 billion. Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), the third largest Dow component, is the second-worst blue-chip stock today, down 1.2% to $165.63.

Among technology stocks, IBM, the second largest Dow component, is down 0.6%, while Google is down 2% and Microsoft is down 1.7%. Twitter is the worst performing megacap technology stock, falling 6.1% to $57.91.

The one megacap technology stock rising today is Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), up 0.72% to $550. Apple reports earnings after the market close today. The company has guided revenue between $55 billion and $58 billion. Analysts expect earnings per share of $14.09 on revenue of $57.46 billion.

On the conference call scheduled for 5 p.m. EST we might also hear more from CEO Tim Cook on Apple's capital allocation plans. Activist investor Carl Icahn, who owns $3 billion worth of shares, has been calling for Apple to buy back a large amount of stock. I have backed a large special dividend. In any event, we agree that Apple sitting on $150 billion in cash is a waste of investors' money. Apple has at least implemented a dividend and announced a buyback authorization, but only plans on returning money that it holds domestically. Apple has said it plans on keeping the $100 billion or so that it holds in foreign banks until the U.S. changes its tax laws or institutes a repatriation tax holiday. But with more shareholder pressure that could change.

If you're looking for some long-term investing ideas, you're invited to check out The Motley Fool's brand-new special report, "The 3 Dow Stocks Dividend Investors Need." It's absolutely free, so simply click here now and get your copy today.

Dan Dzombak has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Apple, Goldman Sachs, and Visa. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Visa. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Compare Brokers