What more can you say? A 349-point loss pretty much speaks for itself.
tumbled 349.09 points Monday to 4223.74, the biggest point decline in its history. And the 7.6% decline was the fifth-worst in Nasdaq history.
The selloff in
after the software giant was unable to reach a settlement with the government in its antitrust case was seen as the trigger for the overall selling, but could not be blamed for a 349-point loss. Instead, traders continued to bail from positions in what was a continuation of the selling seen for much of last week.
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
index closed down 108.66, or 9.8%, at 998.41, its first time below 1000 since Dec. 3 of last year.
TheStreet.com New Tech 30 finished down an astounding 102.52, or 14%, at 637.87. Money left technology and went into traditional blue-chips. The
ended up 300.01.
The tech sector was finally suffering from concerns over valuation. Those concerns came to the fore last week after
analyst Abby Joseph Cohen said her aggressive portfolio was not overweighted technology stocks for the first time in 10 years. Selling persisted after
fund manager Mark Mobius
warned that recent volatility in Internet stocks could be the start of a global crash in the sector. And while the Net sector was able to recover with the rest of tech late Friday, selling returned Monday and it turned to panic selling as the day progressed.
Traders took it out on the stocks that had rallied the hardest over the past few months. Among traditional Internet names,
closed down 32 3/4, or 19%, at 143 1/4. The stock has rallied on hopes of a partnership with
closed down 27 9/16, or 14%, at 167 7/16 and
finished off 31 23/32, or 21%, at 122.
Infrastructure and business-to-business plays were crushed.
finished down 59 15/16, or 20%, at 240.
finished down 50 3/4, or 33%, at 105.
lost 43 13/16, or 34%, to 85 1/16.
ended down 43 1/2, or 35%, at 81.
dropped 34 7/16, or 26%, to 99 1/8, while
ended down 32 7/8, or 22%, at 116 5/8.
When will the selling end? Some
technicians have targeted 4000 as a place where some technical support could come in, though the 3900 level represents a 50% correction from the Nasdaq's up move from October of last year to the March 10 high of 5132. The market also is facing what could be a key employment report on Friday.
According to one trader, if the market sells off after the employment report, that could be a time when people will buy heading into the earnings-reporting period. But the trader said that the market typically sells off after the first-quarter period, so the recovery could be short-lived.
In addition, he said, people who have to pay taxes may be selling stock ahead of tax day, and others are getting margin calls, all contributing to the panic selling. And the trader said that he was afraid of what might happen if the Nasdaq begins to take the Dow down with it. There was rotation for now, he said, but if money is taken out of the market, then it could get even uglier.