IBM Drags Dow Jones Industrial Average Futures Lower

Why Now Is the Time to Protect Your Portfolio

by Josh Selway

Published on Oct 20, 2015 at 8:50 AM

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) are lower this morning, after the latest round of blue-chip earnings. Specifically, Travelers Companies Inc (NYSE:TRV), Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), and United Technologies Corporation (NYSE:UTX) are all pointed modestly higher following their latest quarterly reports -- but International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM) is off nearly 5% after a bad revenue miss. With only housing starts on the schedule, the economic calendar is light, meaning earnings will likely drive the day's action. 

Continue reading for more on today's market, including:

And now, on to the numbers…


Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) are 46.5 points below fair value. 

5 Things You Need to Know Today


  1. Stocks in Asia ended mostly higher, even as energy names continue to struggle.
  2. The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 752,685 call contracts traded on Monday, compared to 507,421 put contracts. The resultant single-session equity put/call ratio jumped to 0.67, while the 21-day moving average edged up to 0.74. 
  3. Confirming recent speculation, Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE:YUM) announced it will spin off its China business into a separate, publicly traded company, according to Bloomberg. The news has the shares 5.3% higher ahead of the open. 
  4. IBM is getting drilled in electronic trading, after the tech giant reported revenue way below estimates, and lowered its full-year forecast. The stock is 4.9% in the red before the open, but that may be good news for the recent crop of skeptical speculators
  5. Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) CEO Tim Cook said at a conference Monday the company's music streaming service, Apple Music, now has more than 15 million total users. This figure takes into account 8.5 million people still using a free trial. A little over two months ago, Apple Music had roughly 11 million members


Earnings and Economic Data


Today's economic docket remains light, with only the release of building permits and housing starts on tap. The earnings schedule includes Cepheid (CPHD), Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG), Cree (CREE), Harley-Davidson (HOG), Illumina (ILMN), Intuitive Surgical (ISRG), Lockheed Martin (LMT), VMware (VMW), and Yahoo! (YHOO). To see what else is coming up on this week's docket, click here.

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