The Dow's Propping Up the Market This Morning

After three straight days of triple-digit declines, it might seem like the Dow Jones Industrials (INDEX: ^DJI) would be ready for a bounce. Yet with a disappointing report from Apple weighing on the market, the broader market traded slightly lower near the open. Nevertheless, more optimistic earnings news from several Dow components helped pull the average up, supporting the entire stock market with a 20-point rise just before 11 a.m. EDT.

On the earnings front, Boeing (NYS: BA) and Caterpillar (NYS: CAT) both helped add to the Dow's gains. Caterpillar saw a record profit in the second quarter of $2.54 per share on a 64% jump in net income and a better-than-expected 21% rise in revenue. More importantly, the company issued positive guidance for the remainder of the year, boosting its full-year EPS estimate up a dime. After a long swoon in recent months, the stock picked up more than 2% on the news.

As for Boeing, the aerospace giant picked up almost 2% after also beating earnings estimates and raising guidance. With analysts having expected a drop in earnings per share, Boeing managed to raise net income by about 3% on sales growth of 21%. Although Boeing's commercial business provided a lot of its growth, even sales at its defense business rose 7%.

Falling again today was Cisco Systems (NAS: CSCO) . Even after the stock's huge plunge yesterday on news of layoffs and increased competition, investors still apparently fear that VMware's purchase of Nicira will challenge the company going forward. Yet for its part, Cisco rival Juniper Networks (NYS: JNPR) soared more than 10% on positive earnings results. Cisco continues to face challenges from all sides and needs to meet them head-on in order to prove itself going forward.

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Fool contributor Dan Caplinger doesn't own shares of the companies mentioned. You can follow him on Twitter @DanCaplinger. The Motley Fool owns shares of Cisco Systems. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of VMware. 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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