1 Industrial Giant is Dragging the Dow Lower Today

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI  )  was trading 53 points lower, or 0.32%, by midafternoon as investors digested disappointing economic data out of China. China's General Administration of Customs announced a 18.1% decline in Chinese exports for February, compared to last year. According to Morningstar, the data also showed China had a $22.98 billion trade deficit for the month, compared to a $31.86 billion surplus in January. Worries over slowing economic growth in China has affected Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT  ) negatively today.

The heavy machinery manufacturer was trading 0.4% lower today. China's falling exports caused many commodities markets to decline -- including metals, which will hurt Caterpillar's business. Caterpillar has had a rough decline over the last year and the road to recovery might not come in 2014, especially if China's slowdown postpones a commodities comeback that would lead to better mining-equipment sales.

Boeing (NYSE: BA  ) is the Dow's biggest loser today, trading 1.7% lower after a couple of concerns hit the news feeds. The first was the weekend disappearance of a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 carrying 239 people. Boeing has since insisted that the Boeing 777 is one of the safest planes on Earth.

 "This is the best international plane ever built yet -- it's got an impeccable track record after 20 years and over 1,200 deliveries," said Richard Aboulafia, vice president for analysis with the Teal Group in Virginia, according to USA Today. "It's typically used on international routes, and it's established a new standard for international safety."

Boeing's 787 problems are coming at a bad time while it aims to accelerate production. Source: Boeing.

Another issue for Boeing was the discovery of hairline cracks on the wings of 42 Dreamliner 787 airplanes that were in production. No cracks were found in planes already delivered and the problem was rooted in the manufacturing process from one of its overseas suppliers. This is just the latest problem that could cause 787 delivery delays to customers. The Dreamliner is a serious part of Boeing's business and will continue to drag margins lower while the program remains unprofitable due to delays and budget overruns.

Outside of the Dow, Ford (NYSE: F  ) continues to post great progress in the U.K.. The automaker said February car sales in the market were up 3%, but its lead over the nearest rival in total sales has grown by more than 80% this year, compared to the same period in 2013. Ford's retail car sales market share grew to 15.3%, 160 basis points higher than February 2012.

"Ford's fast sales start to 2014 is solidly based on growth in the more profitable retail and net fleet sectors and is a result of our continued investment in exciting products and industry-leading technologies, delivered through the strongest dealer network in the UK," said Mark Ovenden, Ford Britain chairman and managing director, in a press release.

This is good news for Ford investors as Europe continues to drag company profitability lower. The turnaround story is finally taking place; once the company breaks even in the region, as it is expected by mid-decade, it will be a strong boost to Ford's bottom line. 

Dividend stocks like Ford can make you rich
One of the dirty secrets that few finance professionals will openly admit is the fact that dividend stocks as a group handily outperform their non-dividend paying brethren. The reasons for this are too numerous to list here, but you can rest assured that it's true. However, knowing this is only half the battle. The other half is identifying which dividend stocks in particular are the best. With this in mind, our top analysts put together a free list of nine high-yielding stocks that should be in every income investor's portfolio. To learn the identity of these stocks instantly and for free, all you have to do is click here now.

Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (2)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2871068, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 8/28/2015 1:28:48 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Daniel Miller

As a Motley Fool Industrial Specialist, I use my marketing and business background in the automotive industry to evaluate major automakers and other large industrial corporations. Follow me on twitter for tweets about stocks, cars, sports, and anything I find amusing.

Today's Market

updated Moments ago Sponsored by:
DOW 16,617.45 -37.32 -0.22%
S&P 500 1,985.75 -1.91 -0.10%
NASD 4,818.53 5.82 0.12%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

8/28/2015 1:13 PM
^DJI $16617.45 Down -37.32 -0.22%
BA $132.80 Up +0.93 +0.70%
The Boeing Company CAPS Rating: ****
CAT $75.84 Up +0.18 +0.23%
Caterpillar, Inc. CAPS Rating: ***
F $13.75 Up +0.19 +1.36%
Ford CAPS Rating: ****