Disappointing earnings from technology leaders are to blame for the drop in the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX: .DJI) today. Leading the disappointments is the missed revenue expectations from International Business Machines Corp.’s, aka IBM (NYSE: IBM).
IBM’s stock price fell around 6.5% aftermarket. Their sales have now declined or remained stagnant for ten quarters with no year-over-year increase in revenue. Their biggest unit (cloud and cognitive software) saw revenue decrease 4.5% from the year earlier. Unfortunately for IBM, this is becoming a familiar pattern and is reflected in their stock price.
It is still too early into earnings season to make broader characterizations across the market. But, keep an eye on the stock charts to see how traders react to the news, rather than taking headlines at face value.
Fundamental and technical data are pointing to a much-needed correction. Not a full-fledged bear market but a healthy pullback that will allow stocks to move forward with the correct momentum. Some key data points to keep in mind in this regard: the divergence between the S&P 500 (INDEXSP: .INX) and the RSI oscillator, the percentage of stocks trading above their 200-day moving average, and the put-to-call ratio.