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Today's Primer Post

Despite an overall positive year for U.S. stocks so far, the S&P 500's Monday jinx remains in effect: the index has fallen each Monday trading day so far in 2013. Though the major averages have been inconsistent in the past few weeks, neither the Dow nor the S&P 500 has seen a two-day losing streak so far this month.


No major economic reports are on the calendar this morning, though there are a few data points for investors to consider. The National Federation of Independent Business is out with its monthly small business sentiment index at 7:30 a.m. New York time, with economists looking for a reading of 89.5 for January following December's 88.0. The Labor Department issues its monthly "JOLTS" report for December at 10 a.m., which measures job opportunities and labor turnover. And the Treasury issues the federal budget statement for January at 2 p.m.


The Treasury will sell $32 billion in 3-year notes today, with the results of that auction available shortly after 1 p.m.


Earnings activity ramps up this morning, led by the latest quarterly results from Dow component Coca-Cola (KO). We'll also get earnings reports from Avon Products (AVP), Fossil (FOSL), Goodyear Tire (GT), McGraw-Hill (MHP), Marsh & McLennan (MMC), Omnicom (OMC), and Reynolds American (RAI). After the closing bell, we'll hear from Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD), Cliffs Natural (CLF), and Western Union (WU).


Apple (AAPL) will be in the spotlight today, as CEO Tim Cook speaks at the Goldman Sachs Technology Conference in San Francisco. Cook has a busy day ahead – he'll also be present at the State of the Union address in Washington tonight.


HCA (HCA) is announcing a secondary stock offering, with major shareholders in the hospital operator planning a sale of 50 million shares. Those stockholders will receive all the proceeds from the offering, and none of the shares are being sold by either management or the company.


Lions Gate (LGF) reported third quarter profit of $0.27 per share, ten cents above estimates, with revenues also beating consensus. The movie studio's results were helped by a strong showing for the latest film in the "Twilight" series.


Masco (MAS) earned $0.04 per share for the fourth quarter, compared to analyst estimates of a $0.01 per share loss. The building products company says its results were helped by a strong North American market, and that it expects strong growth in new home construction this year.


Facebook (FB) has been downgraded to "market perform" from "outperform" at Bernstein, with the firm saying that potential upside for the stock from this point is uncertain, while the downside risk is large.


Carnival (CCL) says its disabled Triumph cruise ship is now headed for Mobile, Alabama, aided by a tugboat. The ship is due to arrive in Alabama on Thursday.


Barclays (BCS) is planning to cut at least 3,700 jobs in a restructuring plan which aims to cut $2.7 billion in annual costs.


Bank of NY Mellon (BK) will take an $850 million charge against earnings, following an unfavorable court decision. The IRS had sought to invalidate a $900 million tax benefit stemming from a $1.5 billion loan from Barclays, saying the transactions lacked "economic substance", and the tax court agreed. BNY Mellon says it will appeal the decision.


Dun & Bradstreet (DNB) reported fourth quarter profit of $2.38 per share, excluding certain items, nine cents below estimates. Revenues for the business information provider also fell short, although it did raise its quarterly dividend to $0.40 per share from $0.38. The company says 2012 was a challenging year, primarily due to weakness in North America.