The latest ADP employment update today shows 139,000 new U.S. nonfarm jobs added during in February, which was lower than the 155,000 economists were hoping for. Furthermore, ADP revised its January figure of 175,000 down to 127,000, which is never a good sign.
With this news and more uncertainty about what the Labor Department's job figure will look like on Friday, as of 1 p.m. EST the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) was down 35 points, or 0.22%, while the S&P 500 was flat and the Nasdaq was up 0.18%.
Two Dow movers today are Nike (NYSE:NKE), as shares are down 1.4%, and Disney (NYSE: DIS) where shares are up 1.4%.
Nike's fall comes after rival Adidas reported earnings this morning. Although Nike is still the market leader in athletic apparel, the competition seems to be heating up with Adidas posting a sales increase of 3.3% during the latest quarter. Furthermore, Adidas expects to have a good 2014; the World Cup is being played this summer in Brazil and Adidas still owns soccer when it comes to apparel and shoes -- though Nike has made it clear it wants to make headway in this area. Lastly, Adidas did warn that currency exchange rates will likely impact results in 2014, an issue Nike will also likely have to deal with and one reason the stock may be down today.
Meanwhile, it seems that investors like Disney's recently announced deal with Dish Network. The deal enables Dish customers to stream Disney shows on mobile apps; in exchange, Dish will disable its commercial-skipping feature for three days after a show originally airs. The deal is likely a win-win for both companies. Dish will now be able to offer its customers the sought-after ability to watch TV anywhere at any time. The ad-skipping features allows Disney to make more money on the shows its produces, meaning the return on investment should be greater.
Outside the Dow, shares of GameStop (NYSE:GME) are up more than 3.2% today following yesterday's announcement that the company's board of directors approved a 20% dividend boost. The previously yearly dividend amount of $1.10 per share will now be $1.32 per share, with the first increased quarterly payment set for distribution on March 25 to shareholders of record as of March 17. Since 2010, the company has spent $2.1 billion on share repurchases, dividends, and paying down debt.
Looking for the Next BIG Thing? Look no Further
They said it couldn't be done. But David Gardner has proved them wrong time, and time, and time again with stock returns like 926%, 2,239%, and 4,371%. In fact, just recently one of his favorite stocks became a 100-bagger. And he's ready to do it again. You can uncover his scientific approach to crushing the market and his carefully chosen six picks for ultimate growth instantly, because he's making this premium report free for you today. Click here now for access.
Matt Thalman owns shares of Walt Disney. The Motley Fool recommends Nike and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool owns shares of GameStop, Nike, and Walt Disney. 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.