Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
Index futures as of 7:35 a.m. EST suggest a strong day on the stock market, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) set to gain 83 points at the opening bell.
That should keep markets hovering near their all-time highs, thanks in part to an earnings season that has seen most companies beat profit expectations. The Federal Reserve has also played a role in the Dow's stellar 20% jump so far this year: The central bank has stuck with its stimulus program amid steady but unimpressive economic growth.
With that bigger picture in mind, here are a few individual stock stories to watch for in today's market.
Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) begins trading on the New York Stock Exchange today. The company priced its initial public offering at $26 a share, giving it an implied $14.4 billion valuation. This has been a good year for IPOs, as the average one-day gain for new public companies is 17%. And there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about Twitter's long-term growth potential. Still, retail investors are often at a disadvantage in these situations. Brokerage firms, for example, will get less than 20% of today's share offering to distribute to retail clients, according to The Wall Street Journal, meaning that early buyers will probably have to pay a hefty premium.
Stratasys (NASDAQ:SSYS) this morning announced better-than-expected earnings for the third quarter. The 3D printing company booked adjusted profit of $0.45 a share on a 26% boost in revenue to $126.1 million. Analysts were expecting $0.42 per share and $117 million in sales. Stratasys got a boost from its MakerBot acquisition, which has given it a strong position in desktop 3D printing. The company also raised its full-year revenue guidance to $480 million, slightly above Wall Street's expectations. Stratasys' stock is up 3.9% in premarket trading.
Finally, Scripps Networks Interactive (NASDAQ:SNI) also reported surprisingly high third-quarter profit this morning. Earnings improved by 12% to reach $0.87 a share as revenue ticked higher by 9% to $617 million. Scripps is seeing its popular lifestyle channels like HGTV and Food Network pull in higher ad revenue and affiliate fees. Profitability ticked down, though, thanks to heavy spending on Scripps' international and digital growth initiatives. Still, the stock looks like a bargain at just 17 times trailing earnings. Scripps shares are unchanged in premarket trading.