Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ), The Boeing Company (BA), Hewlett-Packard Company (HPQ): Two Stocks Propping Up the Dow and One Big Loser

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It’s been a strong week for the Dow Jones Industrial Average , but the market is taking a breather today, and the index has risen a meager four points as of 2:55 p.m. EDT. One thing that isn’t helping the market any is the announcement that two states incorrectly reported unemployment claims, causing the figure to fall to the lowest level of claims since April 2006. There aren’t too many winners in the Dow today, but here are some of the biggest movers.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) is one of the Dow’s biggest gainers today, up 1.9%. Investors seem to be warming up to the idea of the company purchasing the remaining 45% stake of Verizon Wireless, but to help pay for this purchase Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) initiated a corporate bond offering of $49 billion. That’s a huge offering, blowing past the previous record of $17 billion set by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL).

This is the latest instance of corporations rushing to sell debt, as long-term interest rates are expected to rise when the Federal Reserve decides to wind down its stimulus. Next week the Fed holds a two-day meeting, and most analyst expects a clearer indication when this will take place.

The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA) is also a rare Dow winner today, up 0.8%. The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA) announced that it will showcase products designed for the U.S. Air Force during an exposition starting Sept. 16 at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in Maryland.

“This event is an excellent opportunity to demonstrate The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA)’s expertise in delivering more capability at less cost to the U.S. Air Force and the nation’s allies,” said Jack Catton, Boeing Government Operations’ vice president of combat Air Force systems, in a press release.

As defense cuts loom, The Boeing Company (NYSE:BA) investors will want to keep an eye on the company’s innovation and cost-cutting measures to see if it can edge competitors out while contracts continue to thin out.

Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) has had a rough go lately, and it’s one of the biggest losers in the Dow today, down 1.5%. Recently it was announced that Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) would be dropped from the Dow, and that seems to sum up the company’s prospects at this point in time — pretty dismal. While the company says it’s making progress in its turnaround, the PC business faces steep sales declines while substitute technology and products flood the market. Other giant companies, such as Cisco, are eying Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ)’s traditional business and will increase competition in key markets, likely lowering margins for Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ).

The article 2 Stocks Propping Up the Dow and 1 Big Loser originally appeared on and is written by Daniel Miller.

Fool contributor Daniel Miller owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends Apple. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple.

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