It appears European fears are taking the day off, replaced by confirmation that China isn't going to lead the world out of recession alone. The Middle Kingdom's economic troubles, which have been under-reported in this country thanks to our own persistently high unemployment and the sexier Greek euro-tragedy, have come into the spotlight. Inflation worries for the world's second-largest economy caused the Chinese government to aggressively tighten interest rates, but the slowdown that caused continues to persist. The new stimulus will focus on infrastructure spending, which if successful in jump-starting demand, will hopefully catch the attention of politicians here at home.
With that in mind, let's take a closer look at how the major indexes are faring and drill down on a few stocks making headlines.
Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI)
Nasdaq (INDEX: ^IXIC)
S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC)
Source: Yahoo! Finance.
The Nasdaq is faring the worst of the three major indexes, which doesn't come as a surprise, given the technology sector's relative weakness; it's lagging all but the energy sector today. Yesterday's Dell (NAS: DELL) debacle, where management surprised the Street, guiding for a $400 million to $700 million revenue miss this quarter, culminated with a 17% plunge and an eradication of over $4.5 billion in market value.
Dow component Hewlett-Packard (NYS: HPQ) got caught up in the sell-off ahead of its earnings release and CEO Meg Whitman's restructuring plan. Shares are up almost 3% after investors heard details of 27,000 layoffs and cutting operating expenses by $3.5 billion annually. However, in a CNBC interview, Whitman admitted the company hasn't settled on a smartphone strategy yet, but "it's on the agenda." For HP's sake, I hope it's at the very tippy-top of that list, since mobile is the future of the industry and Dell's recent disclosure showed how difficult life can be on the wrong side of a tech revolution.
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At the time thisarticle was published David Williamsonholds no position in any company mentioned.Click hereto see his holdings and a short bio.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of Dell. The Motley Fool has adisclosure policy.
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