Stocks flat as investors weigh earnings, housing

NEW YORK (AP) ? Stocks are flat in early trading as investors weigh mixed corporate earnings against a surprise jump in the number of new homes started in September.

Apple Inc. fell 4 percent after the company’s results didn’t live up to Wall Street’s expectations. Intel Inc. gained 3 percent after its earnings beat expectations.

Builders began work on new homes in September at the fastest pace in 17 months. The 15 percent jump from August was well above what economists expected.

Minutes after the opening bell, the Dow was down less than a point at 11,575. The S&P 500 was unchanged at 1,225. The Nasdaq was down 10, or 0.4 percent, to 2,646.