Disappointing earnings weighed down the markets during the midday with the Dow dropping 40 points to 12,572. Nasdaq tumbled 17 points to 2347.
On the upside
NutriSystem (Nasdaq: NTRI) forecast first quarter revenue ahead of analyst estimates prompting upgrades as marketing and customer retention improved.
The Russian governement approved Antigenics' (Nasdaq: AGEN) kidney cancer vaccine Oncophage making the product the only vaccine for cancer available in the world.
Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) said that a supply shortage will boost prices and lift 2008 earnings.
On the downside
Agria (NYSE: GRO) announced the resignation of chief operating officer Zhixin Xue and warned that the agricultural supplier may file its 2007 annual report late.
The bankruptcy filing of The Education Resources Institute, which guarantees student loans, sent shares of student loan servicer provider First Marblehead (NYSE: FMD) tumbling.
Pending home sales dropped to their lowest level on record sending shares of home builder Pulte Homes (NYSE: PHM) tumbling.
In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more more than 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by nearly the same on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks lost 4 points to 709.