Disappointment that the Federal Reserve will not infuse the economy with additional funds weighed the markets down to a lower open with the Dow losing 53 points to 12,952. Nasdaq fell 19 points to 2966.
On the upside
Costs related to the spin-off of two business units weighed ITT (NYSE: ITT) down to a fourth quarter loss but revenue climbed.
Fourth quarter earnings slipped for CenterPoint Energy (NYSE: CNP) but the results topped analyst estimates.
Carter's (NYSE: CRI) reported fourth quarter earnings that surpassed analyst expectations by a wide margin.
On the downside
Fourth quarter earnings rose for Spreadtrum Communications (Nasdaq: SPRD) but the company forecast first quarter revenue below analyst expectations.
Vocus (Nasdaq: VOCS) will acquire email marketer iContact in a deal valued at approximately $179 million.
CEDC (Nasdaq: CEDC) widened fourth quarter losses warned that the vodka maker had insufficient funds to repay debt.
In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by nearly 3 to 1 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks tumbled 12 points to 810.