Stock Market Today: Coach's Weak Holiday and United Technology's Spiking Profits

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

Expect a weak start to the stock market today, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 35 points, or 0.2%, in premarket trading this morning. We are a few days into earnings season, and so far 65 members of the S&P 500 index have posted their quarterly results -- with two-thirds of that group beating profit and sales estimates, according to Bloomberg. Meanwhile, new earnings announcements have a number of stocks on the move this morning, including Coach , United Technologies , and Abbott Labs .

Coach posted a 6% decline in quarterly revenue, to $1.42 billion, as the retailer continued to struggle in reconnecting with fashion shoppers. Growth in the company's men's, footware, and Asian markets wasn't enough to overcome a big drop in its women's handbag and accessories business, and comparable-store sales dove by 13.6%. Coach's earnings fell to $1.06 a share for its second quarter, which was 14% below last year's result. Management admitted that those holiday-quarter results were "disappointing," but pointed to success in China, where sales grew by 25%, and to upcoming new product launches as reasons for optimism. Investors don't appear to be sold on that view, as Coach's stock is down 7.6% in premarket trading.


United Technology this morning booked a 29% boost in adjusted earnings for the fourth quarter, to $1.58 a share. Sales ticked higher by 2% to reach $16.8 billion. United Technology's aerospace and airline parts businesses were standouts in the quarter, as they both booked 20% order growth and helped organic sales rise by 4% overall. And, thanks to accelerating order growth toward the end of the year, the company was able to affirm its outlook for 2014, saying earnings should come in at about $6.70 a share on revenue of $64 billion. The stock is down 0.5% in premarket trading.

Finally, Abbott Labs posted fourth-quarter earnings of $0.58 a share on sales of $5.66 billion. Both figures were about even with what Wall Street expected. Results were helped along by a boost in Abbott's diagnostics business, which grew by 9% in the quarter. Abbott also issued earnings guidance for 2014, saying that it expects to book profit of $2.21 a share, exactly what analysts had targeted. The company boosted its share repurchase plans as well, to $2 billion for the year. The stock is up 1.2% in premarket trading.

Start 2014 off right
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The article Stock Market Today: Coach's Weak Holiday and United Technology's Spiking Profits originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Demitrios Kalogeropoulos has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Coach. The Motley Fool owns shares of Coach. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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