The Dow Can't Be Stopped


Markets were mixed today, as Apple's slide bucked the broader bull market, sending the tech-heavy Nasdaq down 0.7% and leaving the S&P 500 unchanged after a brief flirtation with 1,500. The Dow Jones Industrial Average , however, posted a gain for the 10th day out of the past 11, rising 46 points are 0.3%.

Apple, of course, finished down 12.3% after a slim miss on revenue and delivering guidance below expectations. It seems the rocket-like growth has ended, and investors have been fleeing since the iPhone 5 came out. Competitor Samsung, meanwhile, posted a record $8.3 billion in profit, and market optimism was further reassured as initial unemployment claims hit a new five-year low at 330,000 last week.

Apple's longtime rival Microsoft didn't exactly show up the iPhone-maker in its report, falling 1.5% after hours. The Windows-maker's profit dropped 3.7% in the quarter, which was the first to include Windows 8 and its new Surface tablet. Revenue in the Windows division, which includes the Surface, grew 24%, and overall revenue increased 3% to $21.5 billion. Earnings per share of $0.76 beat estimates by a penny. Microsoft didn't provide earnings guidance for the year.

Conglomerate 3M also reported earnings this morning, and shares rose modestly over the day, finishing up 0.2%. Profits grew 3.9% and per-share earnings reached $1.41, in line with expectations. Revenue, meanwhile, beat expectations, increasing 4.2% to $7.39 billion, and the company said profits should increase by 6% to 10% 2013. CEO Inge Thulin also said the company will combine its security and traffic-safety units and thereby phase out 300 jobs.

Elsewhere on the Dow, Cisco Systems led all components, jumping 1.9% after selling its Linksys home-router unit to Belkin, one more sign of its aim to focus on business rather than individual customers. The price wasn't disclosed. Rival Juniper Networks also rose modestly after hours, as it beat earnings estimates.


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Fool contributor Jeremy Bowman owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends 3M, Apple, and Cisco Systems and owns shares of Apple and Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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