Rising consumer prices weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow tumbling 74 points to 12,263. Nasdaq lost 10 points to 2296.
On the upside
As part of a restructuring plan, Walter Industries (NYSE: WLT) will lay off workers and close 36 sales centers.
Although LTX Corp. (Nasdaq: LTXX) reported a loss for the second quarter, sales rose.
On the downside
NutriSystem (Nasdaq: NTRI) forecast first quarter as well as full year revenue well below analyst estimates prompting a downgrade.
While Crocs (Nasdaq: CROX) reported sharply higher fourth quarter earnings, the colorful plastic shoemaker forecast 2008 results that fell short of expectations.
Fourth quarter earnings for Suntech Power Holdings (NYSE: STP) rose but not enough to meet expectations.
In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 2 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 9 to 7 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 2 points to 700.