The market looked poised to break its six-day losing streak on the heels of a fantastic earnings report from International Business Machines (IBM $91.56, up $1.01) but after a decent opening, the market is mixed.

The Dow is down 29 points to 9,228 but it looked like we were going below 9K earlier this morning as the Dow hit a low of 9,045. The S&P 500 is lower by seven points and is at 978. The Nasdaq is actually in positive territory and is up 12 to 1,753. IBM has helped keep the Naz afloat and was trading at $95 right out of the gate.

IBM reported 3Q earnings of $2.8 billion, or $2.05 a share, versus $2.4 billion, or $1.68 a share, in the same period a year earlier. Revenues came in at $25.3 billion, up from $24.1 billion. Wall Street was looking for $2.01 and $26.5 billion in revs. So they beat by four cents but were a little shy on revenues. Not bad.

Still, the market’s gyrations could lead to its seventh down day for the Dow. I did say the other day the Dow could test 8,300 and a break below 9,000 could lead that charge. There’s still a significant amount of nervousness in the credit markets and banks are hoarding their cash and being stingy on the loans.

There will be “pockets” of opportunity because investors are scared and that uncertainty is causing them to panic. There will be a rally soon and although it may not be in the cards over the near-term, we are going to be able to buy a lot of cheap longer-term call options on some quality stocks.

Rick Rouse