About the best thing you can say is that the slide happened at the opening of the session and the blue chip index stayed within a fairly narrow trading range for the rest of the day (about an hour before the close the Dow fell below 200 points). Trading was pretty much set after several companies reported weak third-quarter earnings - as well as lower prospects for the full year and into 2013. Frankly, the sell-off today and Friday could have been anticipated, given the near-record highs a few weeks ago. Markets don't go up or down forever. The question, as always, is whether the slide reflects merely a pause in the action (and with it a buying opportunity) or something more long-lasting. You can find arguments on both sides. Personally, I'd be careful for a while. The Dow finished at 13,102, down 1.8 percent on the day, but it's up 7.2 percent year to date.