The S&P 500's two-day record-setting streak came to a close today as stocks finished slightly down as investors seemed to take the opportunity to take some profits off the table on a day with no major economic news. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) finished down 43 points, or 0.3%, as the Nasdaq fell by the same percentage, and the S&P lost 0.1%.
With no domestic reports released today, investors were keeping an eye on developments in Europe, where European Central Bank President Mario Draghi is expected to cut interest rates next week, or add other stimulative measures to boost the sluggish European economy. That assumption caused 10-year treasury yields to slip to 2.44%, their lowest mark since July.
Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) was making headlines today, confirming recent rumors that it would purchase Beats Electronics, acquiring the company known for its Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, for $3 billion. The acquisition is the biggest in the company's history, and yet another example of how much it's changed under CEO Tim Cook. Cook said the deal will help the iPhone maker "continue to create the most innovative music products in the world." Among other assets, Apple will gain access to Beats' subscription music service known as Beats Music, though Apple recently introduced its own streaming service, iTunes Radio. The deal could pave the way for wearable technology products from Apple, and Cook praised the talent of Beats founders Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre, who will now join Apple. The two brands will remain separate. Apple shares were flat in after-hours trading as the deal was widely expected and likely already priced into shares.
Elsewhere, shares of DSW (NYSE: DSW ) got crushed today, falling 27% after its earnings report badly missed the mark this morning. The discount shoe retailer came up short on earnings, revenue, and guidance as management said severe winter weather and a highly competitive retail environment pressured performance in the quarter. Same-store sales dropped 3.7% in the quarter, leading to an overall revenue decrease of 0.4%. Earnings narrowed from $0.50 to $0.42, missing estimates at $0.48. The company dialed back its full-year guidance sharply, saying it sees comps in the low-single digits, and EPS of $1.45-$1.60, down from a previous range of $1.80-$1.95. Analysts had expected earnings of $1.90 for the year. Notably, peer Brown Shoe Co. jumped after its earnings report today, showing that DSW's problems can't be pinned on the industry. While today's drop could present a good buying opportunity, I'd like to see comps move in the right direction first.
Leaked: Apple's next smart device (warning, it may shock you)
Apple recently recruited a secret-development "dream team" to guarantee their newest smart device was kept hidden from the public for as long as possible. But the secret is out, and some early viewers are even claiming its everyday impact could trump the iPod, iPhone, and the iPad. In fact, ABI Research predicts 485 million of these type of devices will be sold per year. But one small company makes this gadget possible. And their stock price has nearly unlimited room to run for early in-the-know investors. To be one of them, and see Apple's newest smart gizmo, just click here!