The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

and the

S&P 500

closed at record highs again today, but ended off their best levels of the session.

The Dow gained 123.77, or 1.3%, to 9897.17, smashing yesterday's record close of 9772.84. It had risen as much as 162.62 to 9935.46. Today was the first day the Dow traded through both the 9800 and 9900 levels.

The S&P 500 advanced 10.74, or 0.8%, to 1297.59, beating yesterday's previous record close of 1286.84. The S&P 500 had risen as much as 19.57 to 1306.41. It traded above 1300 for the first time ever today before easing off that level.

The

Nasdaq Composite Index

rose 6.23, or 0.3%, to 2412.24. The

Russell 2000

slumped fractionally to close at 401.09.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

fell 3.60, or 0.6%, to 584.08, while

TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index

slipped 1.15, or 1.1%, to 108.38.

The 30-year Treasury bond was down 3/32 to 95 15/32, yielding 5.56%.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

advancers beat decliners 1,737 to 1,257 on 908 million shares. On the Nasdaq, losers beat winners 2,024 to 1,968 on 1.031 billion shares.

On the NYSE, 80 issues set new 52-week highs while 74 touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 98 issues set new highs while new lows totaled 70.

On the Big Board,

Compaq

(CPQ)

was most active, with 25.3 million shares changing hands. It was down 1 5/16 to 30 1/8.

On the Nasdaq,

Dell

(DELL) - Get Report

was most active, with 42 million shares changing hands. It was down 1 7/16 to 41 7/8.

Market data above are preliminary. Updated numbers and analysis will follow in the Market Roundup

3:01 p.m.: Stocks Tumble from Session Highs

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

and

S&P 500

are still in record territory but are well off their best levels of the session as the

Nasdaq Composite Index

and

Russell 2000

have fallen into negative territory.

The Dow was up 52 to 9825. It had risen as much as 162.62 to 9935.46. The Dow today has breached both the 9800 and 9900 levels for the first time ever.

Coca-Cola

(KO) - Get Report

was the biggest boost to the Dow. It was up 3 5/8, or 6%, to 66 5/16, on a

Donaldson Lufkin Jenrette

upgrade.

The S&P 500 was up 2 to 1289. The S&P 500 had risen as much as 19.57 to 1306.41 before easing off.

The Nasdaq Comp was down 11 to 2395. The small-cap Russell 2000 was down 1 to 400.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was down 6 to 582.

TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index

was down 2 to 107.

The 30-year bond was down 5/32 to 95 13/32, yielding 5.57%.

Ricky Harrington, senior vice president and technical analyst at

Interstate/Johnson Lane

, speaking when the market's major indices were firmly on the plus side, said that near term, "Dow 10,000 is the big story, there's no question about it."

He said that in the near term, even if the Dow goes above 10,000, "it'll be somewhat of a temporary move."

Harrington said that as the market journeys into the spring and the second quarter there's a good chance the market will suffer a correction.

Today, the market's breadth is a little bit better and there's a few more highs than lows, noted Harrington.

"I don't think the fundamentals justify Dow 10,000," Harrington said. However, he said that, based on money flow, "the Dow is going to be where it's going to be."

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, advancers were beating decliners 1,626 to 1,359 on 733 million shares. On the

Nasdaq Stock Market

, losers were beating winners 2,099 to 1,751 on 829 million shares.

On the NYSE, 77 issues had set new 52-week highs while 62 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 91 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 60.

On the Big Board,

Compaq

(CPQ)

was most active, with 21 million shares changing hands. It was down 1/2 to 31 1/16.

On the Nasdaq,

Dell

(DELL) - Get Report

was most active, with 33 million shares changing hands. It was down 2 7/16 to 40 7/8.

Lafontaine Resignation Sparks Euro Rally

The resignation of German Finance Minister

Oskar Lafontaine

, announced after the closure of Europe's stock exchanges, has sparked a rally in the euro against the dollar, which is trading at 0.908 euro after opening around 0.925. European fixed-income instruments have also soared.

The market reacted positively to Lafontaine's departure because his tax policies were not popular with German businesses and he had publicly criticized the

European Central Bank

for not cutting interest rates in recent months. Equally controversial was his advocacy of tax harmonization for

European Union

member countries.

Differences between Lafontaine and German Chancellor

Gerhard Schroeder

came to a head at a cabinet meeting Wednesday in which Schroeder attacked his finance minister for backing policies opposed by businesses.--

Peter Eavis

2:00 p.m.: Dow, S&P Continue to Shatter Record Highs

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

continued its climb toward

10,000 in a record-setting session as the blue-chip average has broken through both the 9800 and 9900 levels for the first time ever.

Peter Boockvar, equity strategist at

Miller Tabak Hirsch

said the rally is being driven by a desire to get to Dow 10,000 "no matter what."

"It's all liquidity," he said.

The Dow was up 135 to 9907, but off its highs. It had risen as much as 162.62 to 9935.46.

Meanwhile, the

S&P 500

was up 15 to 1302, the first time it ever busted through the 1300 level.

Oil stocks rallied. The

Chicago Board Options Exchange Oil Index

has risen 1%.

The tech-heavy

Nasdaq Composite Index

was up 20 to 9426. The

Russell 2000

was up 1 to 402.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

was up 6 to 594.

TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index

was up 1 to 110.

Boockvar noted that German ADRs surged on news German Finance Minister Oskar Lafontaine resigned.

The 30-year Treasury bond was down 11/32 to 95 8/32, yielding 5.58%.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, advancers were beating decliners 1,787 to 1,086 on 606 million shares. On the Nasdaq, winners were beating losers 1,911 to 1,802 on 685 million shares.

On the NYSE, 75 issues had set new 52-week highs while 57 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 90 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 47.

On the Big Board,

Compaq

(CPQ)

was most active, with 18 million shares changing hands. It was down 7/16 to 31 1/8.

On the Nasdaq,

Brightpoint

(CELL)

was most active, with 25 million shares changing hands. It was down 7 1/16, or 54%, to 5 15/16.

12:59 p.m.: Midday Musings: Dow 10,000 Closer Than Ever as Broad Rally Surges On

11:59 a.m.: Dow Continues March Toward 10,000 Level

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

soared past 9800 and was only about 130 points away from the

10,000 mark, as the

S&P 500

rose over 1300 for the first time before easing back just below that level.

The Dow was up 100 to 9872. The biggest boost to the blue-chip average was

Chevron

(CHV)

, which was up 2 7/8 to 86 1/8.

The S&P 500 was up 11 to 1298.

The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was down 21 to 2427. The small-cap

Russell 2000

was up 2 to 403.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was up 7 to 595.

TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index

was up 2 to 112.

The 30-year Treasury bond was down 3/32 to 95 15/32, yielding 5.56%.

Oil stocks continued to rally as the world's big oil-producing countries talk about cutting output in an effort to boost oil prices. Crude oil futures advanced earlier, but have since fallen into the red. The

Chicago Board Options Exchange Oil Index

was up 1%.

Oil service stocks were higher also. The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Oil Service Index

was up 1%.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, advancers were beating decliners 1,668 to 1,047 on 380 million shares. On the

Nasdaq Stock Market

, winners were beating losers 1,824 to 1,525 on 448 million shares.

On the NYSE, 65 issues had set new 52-week highs while 44 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 67 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 30.

On the Big Board,

Compaq

(CPQ)

was most active, with 13 million shares changing hands. It was down 1/8 to 31 7/8.

On the Nasdaq,

Brightpoint

(CELL)

was most active, with 20 million shares changing hands. It was down 7, or 55%, to 6.

Tech Focus

Major tech gauges were mostly higher. The

Nasdaq 100

was up 1%, while the

Morgan Stanley High-Tech 35

was up 1%. The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Computer Box Maker Index

was up 1%. The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Semiconductor Index

was down fractionally.

Vertical Net

(VERT)

was up 18 11/16, or 19%, to 115 1/2.

Ingram Micro

(IM)

fell 1/2 to 18 1/8. The company forecast that first-quarter earnings would fall short of Wall Street expectations and set a restructuring under which it will shed 1,400 jobs. Ingram Micro expects first-quarter earnings to range from $40 million to $45 million or 27 cents to 30 cents a share before any one-time costs for reductions in its work force. The

First Call

12-analyst estimate currently sees the company earning 42 cents.

3Com

(COMS)

gained 1 3/4, or 7%, to 26 5/16. 3Com and

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Report

said they plan to co-develop a new line of home networking products designed to make it easy for home computer users to connect their PCs and share Internet access, peripherals and applications. Microsoft was up 1 11/16 to 163.

Yahoo!'s

(YHOO)

Yahoo! Germany is joining forces with

Mannesmann Arcor

, Germany's second-largest telecommunications service provider, to ease access to the Internet for the country's 8.4 million German-speaking users. Yahoo! was up 7 7/8 to 181 3/4.

10:56 a.m.: Dow, S&P Build on Wednesday's Record Highs

Oil issues continued to advance after yesterday's rally, as the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was above the 9800 level for the first time ever.

Oil stocks jumped thanks to a continuing rise in crude oil prices which have risen lately on expectations of

OPEC

output cuts.

Today Ali al-Naimi, the Saudi Arabian oil minister, said he expects an agreement on "substantial" oil output cuts soon,

Reuters

reported. The oil minister said further discussions would be needed, but he also said he hoped for a deal "soon," the news agency reported. Naimi made the comments in Amsterdam, where he is meeting with oil ministers from Iran, Venezuela, Algeria and officials from non-OPEC countries, the report said.

The

Chicago Board Options Exchange Oil Index

was up 1%. The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Oil Service Index

was also up 1% after jumping more than 11% yesterday.

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was up 55 to 9828.

Chevron

(CHV)

was up 2 1/16 to 85 5/16, the biggest boost to the Dow.

The

S&P 500

was up 7 to 1294, climbing further into record territory. The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was up 17 to 2423. The small-cap

Russell 2000

up 1 to 403.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was up 7 to 595.

TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index

was up 2 to 111.

The 30-year Treasury bond was down 4/32 to 95 15/32, yielding 5.56%.

On the economic front, the

Commerce Department

reported that

retail sales

rose 0.9% in February. Retail sales, excluding autos, rose 0.2%.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, advancers were beating decliners 1,578 to 996 on 236 million shares. On the

Nasdaq Stock Market

, winners were beating losers 1,664 to 1,355 on 291 million shares.

On the NYSE, 53 issues had set new 52-week highs while 36 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 63 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 26.

On the Nasdaq,

Brightpoint

(CELL)

was most active, with 16 million shares changing hands. It was down 6 15/16, or 53%, to 6 1/8. The company yesterday warned it sees a break-even first quarter, excluding an accounting charge. The

First Call

11-analyst outlook called for earnings of 22 cents a share vs. the year-ago 16 cents. Today, the stock was downgraded by several Wall Street firms.

On the Big Board,

Compaq

(CPQ)

was most active, with 8 million shares changing hands. It was flat at 31 9/16.

9:57 a.m.: Stocks Rise amid Climb in Retail Sales

Stocks were higher in the early going, while overall

retail sales

rose 0.9% in February.

Retail sales, excluding autos, rose 0.2%.

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was up 35 to 9808. The

S&P 500

was up 4 to 1291.

The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was up 14 to 2420. The

Russell 2000

was up 1 to 402.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

was up 7 to 595.

TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index

was up 3 to 112.

The 30-year Treasury bond was down 10/32 to 95 9/32, yielding 5.58%, in the wake of the retail sales report.

Most Up at Open -- NYSE

BP Amoco (BPA) , up 4 7/8 to 93 1/8

: The oil company was higher thanks to stronger oil prices.

Most Up at Open -- Nasdaq

VerticalNet (VERT) , up 4 3/4 to 101

.

Most Down at Open -- NYSE

Nokia (NOKA) , down 2 5/16 to 148 1/8

.

Most Down at Open -- Nasdaq

InfoSpace.com (INSP) - Get Report, down 11 15/16 to 73

: The company yesterday filed with the

Securities and Exchange Commission

a registration to sell up to 2.8 million shares.