The Motley Fool Previous Page

Markets Slide as Bearish Sentiment Runs Rampant

Matt Thalman
August 14, 2013

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.

As investors continue to fear the day the Federal Reserve begins paring back its bond-buying program, the major stock indexes are all in decline today. As of 12:45 p.m. EDT the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI) is down 86 points, or 0.56%, while the S&P 500 is lower by 0.32% and the Nasdaq has lost a more modest 0.11%.

A few Dow losers
Ahead of tonight's earnings release, shares of Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) are down 0.6%. The company is expected to report earnings of $0.51 per share on revenue of $12.41 billion. For the same quarter last year the company reported EPS of $0.47 on sales of $11.69 billion. Furthermore, the company has beaten EPS estimates in each of the last four quarters, and the average analyst estimate for this quarter hasn't changed from $0.51 during the last 90 days, which begs the question: Why are shares falling? 

As my colleague Dan Caplinger noted earlier today, the company is facing increasing pressure from competitors. But I would add that we haven't seen a terribly great quarter from other companies in Cisco's areas of business, and that may be leading investors to believe today's earnings report will mark the company's first miss in the last five quarters.

Boeing (NYSE: BA) is once again having technical problems with its 787 Dreamliner today. ANA Holding, the 787's biggest operator, said it found wiring defects in three of its Dreamliners. The main problem is that the fire-suppression system in the 787 wasn't wired correctly, so if the plane had a fire in one of its engines, the wrong extinguisher would be activated. Anyone who owns shares of Boeing or follows the company even casually knows this isn't the first, or even the second, issue the company has had with its revolutionary 787 Dreamliner. But