“U.S. stocks fell, sending benchmark indexes toward their biggest declines since June, as Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) and General Electric Co. (GE) results missed estimates and euro-area leaders failed to discuss aid for Spain at a summit,” Inyoung Hwang and Nikolaj Gammeltoft report for Bloomberg.

“Microsoft slid 3 percent after the largest software maker posted earnings that fell short of estimates. General Electric lost 3.4 percent as third-quarter revenue missed forecasts. McDonald’s Corp. (MCD) slumped 4.2 percent as sales growth slowed at U.S. stores. Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) dropped 15 percent after announcing a plan to cut staff by 15 percent,” Hwang and ammeltoft report. “‘We had a group of earnings that were somewhat disappointing, especially on the tech side,’ Keith Davis, an analyst at Farr, Miller & Washington LLC, which manages $830 million, said in a phone interview from Washington. ‘There are obviously some very real risks out there, including the fiscal cliff, the U.S. election and the European situation. There are a lot of things that would argue for stock prices to be lower than they are right now.'”

Hwang and ammeltoft report, “A European Union summit failed to discuss further financial assistance for Spain, according to French President Francois Hollande. Germany and France agreed to enforce common banking regulation for the euro area’s 6,000 lenders by the end of next year… Apple Inc. (AAPL) slipped 2.5 percent to $616.60. Shares of the iPhone maker have fallen 12 percent from an all-time high of $702.10 on Sept. 19, driving the stock below its average price in the past 100 days for the first time since July. The shares are still up 52 percent this year.”

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