Long-term investors know that investing in the stock market is largely a waiting game. Although there's plenty of noise from news sources, truly important things only happen occasionally. Today looks like one of the many slow news days you'll see over the course of your investing career, as investors continue to wait for signs of compromise on the fiscal cliff, as well as tomorrow's latest read on the employment situation. For now, though, the Dow Jones Industrials (DJINDICES:^DJI) seem content to trade in a narrow range, rising by about 20 points as of 10:55 a.m. EST.

Even among individual Dow stocks, there wasn't much volatility. Boeing (NYSE:BA) fell about half a percent as a federal mediator requested that the company suspend its labor negotiations with a union of aerospace engineers until after the beginning of 2013. Boeing won't face a strike until January at the earliest, but with the two parties still at an impasse, the situation represents another distraction from the aircraft maker's biggest issue: getting production ramped up while meeting quality-control standards.

Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) posted decent gains of 2%. At a conference yesterday, outgoing CEO Paul Otellini said he expects the company to promote from within when naming a new top executive to lead the company forward after his anticipated May departure. With Intel facing several major strategic challenges, it's essential that a new executive come on board as quickly and seamlessly as possible to give the company the best chance to catch up to its more mobile-focused rivals.

Finally, Disney (NYSE:DIS) rose slightly after accounting for its move to ex-dividend today. Investors are still digesting its deal with Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) allows the streaming service to show Disney movies shortly after their runs in theaters. The move shows just how essential it is for distribution channels to obtain high-quality content, and Disney is in a commanding position to take maximum advantage.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.