Why the Dow Fell Today

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI) fell for the second day in a row as GDP data fell short of expectations and poor earnings weighed on the Dow.

Index

Change

Ending Value

Dow Jones Industrial Average-74.17 [-0.58%]12,660.46
S&P 500 (NAS: ^GSPC) -2.10 [-0.16%]1,316.33

The U.S. Commerce Department released GDP data this morning which showed GDP rose 2.8% in the fourth quarter, faster than last quarter's 1.8% growth. However, 2.8% was below analyst's expectations of 3% growth. The market didn't take to the news very kindly and opened down.

Earnings also played a role in the Dow's decline. Adding to the downward trend was Chevron (NYS: CVX) which reported earnings before the market opened. The stock was the day's loss leader and finished down $2.63 or 2.47% to $103.96. The company missed lowered analyst expectations for both earnings per share and revenue. Chevron reported earnings per share of $2.58; analysts had been expecting $2.85. For revenue, the company reported $60 billion versus analysts' expectations of $71 billion. While the market was down on Chevron today, Fool Analyst Sean Williams believes Chevron's competitor ConocoPhillips is a great dividend stock you can buy now.

Foolish Bottom Line
Chevron's earnings helped move the Dow today, but there are plenty of other companies out there that investors need to watch during this earnings season. In the Fool's "Fourth-Quarter Earnings Report: 7 Stocks You'll Want to Watch," you'll find information on this quarter's possible big performers. It's completely free for our readers, so click here to access your free report today.

At the time this article was published Dan Dzombakcan be found on his Facebook page.Click hereand like his Facebook page to follow his investing articles.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of Chevron and Procter & Gamble. Try any of our Foolish newsletter servicesfree for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe thatconsidering a diverse range of insightsmakes us better investors. The Motley Fool has adisclosure policy.

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