U.S. stocks began with modest declines on Wednesday after the European Central Bank said it would lend a record amount to euro-area banks causing concerns once again in Europe. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 36 points to 12,066. The S&P 500 declined 4 points to 1,236. The Nasdaq Composite shed 27 points to 2,576. The weakness in the tech space is due to Oracle's disappointing earnings last night. The stock is down 13% this morning. All the cloud computing space is getting hit this morning. Only a few techs are trading higher. Cree is up 3% on an upgrade. Research in Motion is jumping 7% on takeover rumors and an upgrade. The financials are under pressure once again. Fortress Investment is lower as their CEO, Dan Mudd the former CEO of Fannie Mae is under investigation from the SEC. The stock is down 2%. JP Morgan is modestly lower on a downgrade. Homebuilder, KB Homes is down 4% even though they beat earnings estimates. In the retail space things are mixed. Coke and Coca Cola Enterprises are higher on upgrades. Walgreens and CarMax are down over 5% on earnings. Pep Boys and Panera Bread are lower on upgrades. Through the morning the averages pushed lower. The Dow fell 60 points and the Nasdaq fell 45 points. The defensive stocks are performing the best. Hershey Foods is up a percent on an upgrade. The consumer staples like Altria, Philip Morris, and Kraft are at new all time highs. Utilities and Healthcare are also performing well. In the afternoon the Dow started to slowly recover moving into the green in the last hour. Even the financials are in the green. Amazing. The Nasdaq remains in the red thanks to Oracle's disappointing earnings last night. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 4 points at 12,107 after losing more than 100 points midday. The S&P 500 ended up 2 points at 1,243, led by utilities and energy shares. Tech was the only S&P 500 subsector to end in the red. The Nasdaq Composite lost 25 points, or 1%, to 2,577.
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