Stocks are mixed today, and U.S. indexes have fluctuated between gains and losses throughout the trading session. As of 3:15 p.m. EDT the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) is flat and the S&P 500 (SNPINDEX:^GSPC) is down a forgettable 0.13%. The only significant economic data was a GDP report from Japan showing 2.6% growth last quarter versus expectations of 3.6%.
The biggest loser on the Dow today is Disney (NYSE:DIS), down 1.5%. The company had a convention this weekend for its fans, although investors didn't find much to get excited about at the show. CEO Bob Iger hinted that Star Wars-themed attractions were on their way, but the company isn't giving up any details at this point. It has land available for development in California and Orlando, so both locations are on the table.
What many investors don't realize is that theme parks are a huge part of Disney's business, having generated 19% of its operating income last year. That's why the company could pay $4.1 billion for Lucasfilm, whose assets will be generating revenue at theme parks for years to come. The acquisition set a high bar for Disney, though, and a lackluster earnings report last quarter has set off a slow sell-off of Disney stock. Long-term investors should see this as a buying opportunity, because this is a franchise that will be generating solid returns for years to come.
Shares of Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) are up 0.8% today after the company listed a new line of microprocessors on its website. The Bay Trail microprocessor uses the 22-nanometer Silvermont chip architecture and comes with improved performance and lower power-consumption than its old Saltwell design. Better yet, Intel has said that next-generation 14-nm Atom products will be out about a year after the Silvermont, and that's when the company could make real market-share gains in tablets and smartphones.
Intel has been dealing with the slow death of the PC for more than a year and has made big investments in new technology to catch up to rival chip-makers in mobile. This is one step in that direction and could allow the company to win more products as it did the Samsung Tab 3 earlier this year. It's a long road ahead for Intel, but a 14-nm microprocessor is the carrot investors are looking for and could mark the company's next growth phase.