Mixed Earnings and Reserved Forecasts Weigh on Markets: Morning Buzzers

Stock futures were lower on Tuesday morning as the latest battery of earnings failed to impress investors. The weekly ICSC-Goldman Store Sales report also revealed that retail sales grew at a slower rate this week.

Futures at 8:45 a.m.: DJIA: -0.12%, S&P 500: -0.20%, NASDAQ: -0.16%.

Here’s what’s buzzing in the pre-market:ford focus

Ford (NYSE:F) was off about 1.5 percent on Tuesday morning after reporting high fourth-quarter profit but reserved expectations. Pre-tax profit of $0.31 per share is the highest it has been in a decade, but the company’s full-year operating margin fell from 5.4 percent to 5.3 percent. Ford expects 2013 operating margin to be equal to or less than its 2012 margin.

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Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE:LLY) climbed fractionally in the pre-market after its modest fourth-quarter earnings report. Total reported revenue fell 1 percent for the quarter to $6 billion, and fell 7 percent for the year to $22.6 billion. Earnings per share fell 4 percent for the quarter to $0.74, and fell 6 percent for the year to $3.66. These results were pretty much in line with expectations, but investors have expressed concern that the company will continue to suffer in the face of generic drug competition.

Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) also posted fractional gains after its fourth-quarter and full-year earnings report. Revenues dropped 7 percent for the quarter while EPS fell 4 percent. For the year, revenue was down 10 percent, while EPS was still down 4 percent. The company cites the loss of exclusivity for Lipitor in November as a major factor for fourth-quarter revenue decline, as well as a negative impact from foreign currency exchange.