Meanwhile, U.S. markets were modestly supported by MMM, which reported in-line earnings. Operating income rose across all divisions, with sales climbing 4.9 percent. MMM is a truly global company: only 36 percent of revenues are in the U.S., while 29 percent are from Asia/Pacific and 23 percent from EMEA. Additionally, 12 percent in Latin America/Canada.
They are far more than just Post It Notes and Scotch tape—they make literally thousands of products and work in automotive, marine and aircraft. They make coated materials, filtration products, and adhesives, among other things.
The company also boasts a Health Care division that services hospitals and dental offices, and a Safety, Security and Protection Services division makes locks and other security products.
Separately, Caterpillar had a mixed bag. They beat on earnings, but revenues were light, full year earnings forecasts was raised, but they lowered the midpoint for revenue gains. Caterpillar, it should be said, is another global company: only about 40 percent of revenue comes from the U.S., and the rest is divided between Europe, Asia/Pacific, and Latin America. The problem is weaker sales in China, and Africa/Middle East:
N. America 39 percent
EMEA 24 percent
Asia/Pacific 22 percent
L. America 14 percent
It's been a disappointing day for initial public offerings (IPOs). Several IPOs priced overnight, all of them below or at the low end of expectations. Radio broadcaster Townsquare Media (TSQ) priced 8.3 million shares at $11, below the price talk of $14—$16.
Several biotechs also priced: Pfenex (PFNX) priced 8.3 million shares at $6, well below the price talk of $12—$14, Intersect (XENT) priced 5 million shares at $11, below the price talk of $11—$13, and Immune Design (IMDZ) priced 5 million shares at $12, the low end of the price talk of $12—$14.
--By CNBC's Bob Pisani