U.S. stocks closed lower on Wednesday as disappointing tech earnings weighted down on the three major indices. (Tweet This)
"Basically, it's a repeat of yesterday," said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global Capital, adding that only a handful of stocks are driving down the broader stock market.
U.S. stocks closed lower on Tuesday, with lackluster earnings from IBM and UTX sending the Dow Jones down 1 percent and the Nasdaq off its recent records.
"This week we're getting a mixed bag of earnings," said William Lynch, director of investments at Hinsdale Associates. "Expectations were low coming in and last week [earnings] came in better than expected."
"We're going to have to wait and see how the rest of earnings play out," Lynch said.
The Nasdaq Composite briefly fell more than 1 percent in the open before trimming losses to about 0.5 percent lower. The S&P and the Dow Jones industrial average also flirted with trading positive in midmorning trade. Nevertheless, the indices remained in negative territory throughout the session, with blue-chip stocks falling over 100 points at their lows.
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Apple closed about 4.29 percent lower, after plunging more than 6 percent in the open. Shares tumbled almost 7 percent to below its 200-day moving average in after-hours trade on Tuesday. The firm's fourth-quarter revenue forecast fell short of forecasts and it missed some targets for iPhone sales.
"Apple's taking 0.18 percent off the S&P 500, which means that without it, we'd be flat for the day," said Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at S&P Dow Jones, at around 3 p.m, when the index was down 0.18 percent.
Shares of Apple also exceeded their 30-day average trade volume of 43.77 million during morning trade.
The stock is a blue-chip component and the top-weighted Nasdaq 100 component.
Microsoft settled 3.74 percent lower. The stock fell more than 3 percent in late trading Tuesday after posting a $3.2 billion net loss for its fiscal fourth quarter ending June 30 following restructuring charges.
"I think there's been a lot of head-scratching about the direction the company seems to be taking," said Kim Forrest, senior equity analyst at Fort Pitt Capital, referring to the company's recent moves and its conference call from Tuesday. "But I like the direction they're going."
Apple 5-day chart