Why the Dow's Not Sinking This Morning

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Last night's news from JPMorgan Chase (NYS: JPM) that it had suffered a huge loss thanks to a trader known as the "London Whale" had many expecting a big drop for the stock market this morning. But even as more economic data from China suggested slower growth there, a drop in the U.S. Producer Price Index led some to believe that the Federal Reserve might have room to add yet more monetary stimulus to boost the sagging economy. At about 10:45 a.m. EDT, the Dow Jones Industrials (INDEX: ^DJI) had overcome an initial dip and were up a quarter-percent.

JPMorgan was the big loser on the day, falling 8% after its trading mishap. The bank's bets on indexes of credit-default swaps for more than 120 different North American companies apparently went bad, costing JPMorgan as much as $2 billion. Bank of America (NYS: BAC) fell 1% in sympathy, but since JPMorgan's losses came from proprietary trading, there's little reason to link the two moves.

Procter & Gamble (NYS: PG) is down slightly after announcing yesterday that it's moving the headquarters of its personal-care business from Cincinnati to Singapore. The move prompted the usual nationalist reaction from critics, but P&G is simply going where the money is -- and with the beauty market in Asia growing much faster than its counterpart in the U.S., P&G will be better positioned to take advantage of the opportunity.


Finally, IBM (NYS: IBM) rose about half a percent. As Fool analyst Isaac Pino discussed earlier this morning, IBM is relying on three growth drivers to help push the tech giant forward. International expansion is an obvious element of IBM's future success, but it's also looking at high-margin profit opportunities closer to home as well.

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At the time this article was published Fool contributor Dan Caplinger doesn't own shares of the companies mentioned. You can follow him on Twitter here. The Motley Fool owns shares of IBM, JPMorgan Chase, and Bank of America. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Procter & Gamble. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Fool has a disclosure policy.

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