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Stocks Slide, Led by Techs; IBM Skids

Stocks remained lower Tuesday amid revenue weakness in the latest round of earnings reports and another disappointing housing report.

Health care, technology and financials were among the weakest-performing sectors today, while materials, energy and consumer staples advanced.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down more than 70 points, led by IBM , Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson .

Just a handful of gainers on the Dow, including consumer components Coca-Cola and Walmart .

The S&P 500 and Nasdaqwere also lower. The CBOE volatility index, widely considered the best gauge of fear in the market, was below 26.

Goldman Sachs shares were mostly flat as the banking giant beat earnings expectations but, true to this season, revenue missed expectations.

Johnson & Johnson shares were also lower after the health care giant reported a increase in earnings but flat revenueamid ongoing recalls of popular nonprescription medicines. The company also reduced its profit forecast for the year by 15 cents a share.

Techs, some of the best performers on Monday, were among the hardest hit today after disappointing earnings late Monday from IBM and .

Analyst reactions to the tech firms have been mixed: JPMorgan raised its price target on IBM to $144.50 from $142.50, while at least two brokerages cut their price targets.

And, Macquarie raised its price target on Texas Instruments to $25 from $24.90, but at least two brokerages cut their ratings and price targets.

“Every quarter, the hurdle gets higher—more has to come from revenue growth,” Mark Eibel, director of client investment strategies at Russell Investments told CNBC.

“The reason why revenue is the focus is that investors are looking for a reason to believe that things are getting better," Eibel explained. "They’re not getting it from the macro as much, so they’re looking for any indication. So that’s why the bar is higher.”

Intel , which delivered an encouraging earnings report last week, slipped as the chip giant is nearing a settlement with the FTC over antitrust allegations, a case that has dogged the company for more than 10 years.

Apple and Yahoo are scheduled to report after the closing bell today.

Apple shares are slightly higher following three consecutive losing streaks. Analysts who follow the iPhone maker are expecting the firm to earn $3.11 a share on revenue of $14.75 billion, according to a consensus from Thomson Reuters.

And some strategists appeared to be bullish on the stock.

“The opportunity to invest in this leading company (with a better financial profile than market participants seem to acknowledge) appears 'iTtractive' at its current multiple,” wrote David Einhorn, president of Greenlight Capital in his quarterly letter to investors. “While growth over the next few years will certainly be slower than it has been over the last few years, Apple does not appear to have fully penetrated its market opportunities.”

In addition, other notable companies reporting earnings tomorrow include: Morgan Stanley, Coca-Cola, United Technologies, Wells Fargo, USBancorp, Qualcomm and Starbucks.

Consumer staples were some of the day's best performers after Pepsibeat analysts' expectations with its latest earnings report, helped by strength in international snack and beverage markets and the recent acquisition of its North American bottlers.

In the day's economic news, another disappointing housing report today: Housing starts hit their lowest level in eight months in June but a rise in permits offered hope that homebuilding was poised to pick up. However, homebuilders were mostly trading higher.

This follows a report yesterday that homebuilder sentiment is at its lowest level in more than a year.

Toyota shares fell following news that the auto maker was subpoenaed by a federal grand jury for documents related to a problem with a steering mechanism in some of its vehicles.

Meanwhile, a day after Amazon announced that it's now selling more Kindle books than hardcover books, Japan's Sharp has announced that it will be the latest company to enter the e-reader and e-book market.

BP shares slipped following news that the oil giant will be allowed to keep its damaged Gulf well capped for another day as tests determined that nearby seepage was not related to the leak.

Oil prices rose above $77 a barrelahead of the weekly oil inventory reports expected to show crude supplies fell last week. Gold jumped above $1,190 an ouncewhile the euro fell against the dollarfrom a more than two-month high.

This Week:
TUESDAY: Earnings from Apple and Yahoo
WEDNESDAY: Weekly mortgage applications; Bernanke testifies before Congress; weekly crude inventories; earnings from Coca-Cola, Morgan Stanley, UTX, Wells Fargo, USBancorp, eBay and Qualcomm
THURSDAY: ECB meeting; weekly jobless claims; Fed's Dudley speaks; existing-home sales; leading indicators; earnings from AT&T, Caterpillar, 3M, Travelers, UPS, BB&T, Fifth Third, KeyCorp, Nokia, PNC Bank, SunTrust, Amazon, American Express, Microsoft and Capital One
FRIDAY: EU bank stress-test results; earnings from Ford, McDonald's

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