The day after U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke announced QE3, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) is moving higher. If the Dow closes the day in the green, it will be the fourth day in a row. So far things are looking good: As of 12:30 p.m. EDT, the index is at 13,605, up 65.70 points, or 0.49%. The index is now up 11.36% year to date, and 16 of its components are actually beating the Dow itself. Only four companies are trading lower for the year, but today 11 are moving into the red. Three of the companies holding the index back are Kraft (UNKNOWN:KRFT.DL), Disney (NYSE:DIS), and AT&T (NYSE:T).
So why are they down?
Kraft Foods is trading lower today by 0.29% after the Dow Jones Averages Index Committee decided to remove the food manufacturer from the index and replace it with UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH). Kraft's last day of trading as a Dow component will be Sept. 21, and UnitedHealth will begin trading on Sept. 24. The decision to make the switch was made because Kraft plans to split into two organizations, and the index committee believes the new companies' lower market capitalization and lower portion of revenue derived from the U.S. make them less representative of the U.S. economy.
After hitting another all-time high this morning, Disney is now trading lower by 0.18%. Year to date, the media and amusement-park giant is up 39.81%, making it the third-best-performing Dow stock over the same time frame. Over the past few trading sessions, the company has continued to break new highs. With no negative news affecting the company, today's slight pullback could simply be investors taking a breather as they re-evaluate the fundamentals of the company.
Lastly, shares of AT&T and Verizon Wireless are moving lower by 2.60% and 2.7%, respectively. News that the iPhone 5 sold out in the first hour may be concerning to short-term telecommunications investors. The subsidies the carriers pay to Apple have always been a thorn in their sides, but the long-term contracts and new data plans allow AT&T and Verizon to make up the difference and then some over the long run.
Although Kraft is being removed from the Dow and splitting into two companies, I believe the split will unlock hidden value for shareholders. With ESPN leading Mickey and friends into the future, shares of Disney still have room to move higher. The wireless carriers have been the darlings of the Dow over the past few months. The high dividend yields and stable growth make them appear to be great stocks for income-driven investors. But before you go out and buy, you must check out this detailed report on "9 Rock-Solid Dividend Stocks." Click here before it's gone.
Fool contributor Matt Thalman does not have a financial interest in any of the companies mentioned above. The Motley Fool owns shares of Walt Disney. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Walt Disney and UnitedHealth Group. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a diagonal call position in UnitedHealth Group. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.