2:15pm (EST)

Despite the headwinds, the bulls are hanging in there.

Moody’s (MCO, $32.53, up $0.17) downgraded Spain, again, but these downgrades sound like broken records from the rating agencies.  As much as we have been talking about the European debt crisis, does it really make sense to downgrade the debt every other day?  Moody’s gave plenty of reasons for the downgrade but they also went after France earlier on Tuesday and they really need to quit kicking the horse.

While Apple (AAPL, $403.05, down $19.19) may have missed Wall Street’s mark, Intel (INTC, $24.40, up $0.01) came through with flying colors which has provided Tech some strength.

Intel reported a profit of $3.47 billion, or $0.65 a share, versus $2.96 billion, or $0.52 a share, in the year earlier period.  Expectations were for $0.61 a share.  Revenues came in at $14.3 billion which was higher than the $13.9 billion analysts had penciled-in.  It was the 12th-straight quarter the company beat sales figures and they also raised their 4th quarter outlook.

We profiled Intel back in September as a covered call trade and we said to get out the cigars as you can see from our link.

Although we didn’t take action, the Intel October 23 calls (INTC111022C00023000, $1.41, up $0.64) were at 42 cents while the Intel January 2014 25 calls (INTC140118C00025000, $3.30, up $0.30) were at $2.10.  The LEAPs would have been a long-term commitment but as you can see, the October calls have easily tripled.

Meanwhile, Apple announced profits of $6.62 billion, or $7.05 a share on revenue of $28.3 billion.  The July-to-September quarter is normally the “weakest” period for the company but other firms would die for a 54% jump in earnings.

Still, investors were caught in a pinch as Apple didn’t release a new product during the quarter.  However, the company did raise its forecast for the current quarter as the new iPhone 4S should help offset some of today’s pain.  Still, Wall Street is throwing the baby out with the bathwater as Apple’s shares are down 5%.

Apple was damned if it did and damned if it didn’t, meaning, if they would have smashed estimates, investors may have sold this news as Apple would have tempered guidance going forward.  Basically what it comes down to is that buyers waited for the new model, regardless if was a iPhone5 or a 4S, and proof of this is the record number of phones they have sold since the launch.  These numbers would have counted towards last quarter’s tally had the company released the upgrade in September and instead will hit the current quarter.

The only thing we wish about Apple is for them to do a stock-split so we can play the options.

As we head to pres, the Dow is up 18 points to 11,595 while the S&P 500 is lower by 4 points to 1,221.  The Nasdaq is off by 26 points to 2,631.  Subscribers, check the Members Area for the latest updates.