Chevron shares dropped 4.2 percent to $112.45 after it said third-quarter profits would be "substantially lower" than the previous quarter, while Alcoa fell 4.6 percent to $8.71 after it posted a quarterly loss. The company cut its outlook for global aluminum demand, citing a slowdown in China.
The American economy is in the throes of the longest, most protracted recovery since the Great Depression. But there is an industry offering a beacon of hope, and it could soon serve as the tipping point that gets America back to work: natural gas.
As year-end nears, investors are in for a surprise about which stocks in the S&P 500 spearheaded the unexpectedly robust upswing in 2010. Hint: Cummins is the only economy-driven name in the bunch. Plus: Hints from Goldman Sachs on how 2011 could turn out.