You'll notice there's no exclamation mark after "Yippee" and with good reason. There really wasn't that much to get excited about in today's market action, as major stock proxies closed well off their session highs and the
Nasdaq Composite Index
actually down on the day.
It wasn't always that way. The session started pretty good overall. Stocks shot sharply higher in the wake of the release of the
Consumer Price Index
, which hit an hour before the opening bell on Wall Street. The
reported overall CPI rose 0.4% while the core CPI -- which excludes food and energy prices -- rose 0.3%. Both figures matched the expectations of economists in a
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But major stock proxies couldn't hold on to anywhere near their best levels of the day. The Treasury market's decay helped take some of the luster out of the market's advance as the 30-year Treasury bond gave up its gains and eventually slipped into negative territory. The long bond weakened in part on fears that the
European Central Bank
may raise interest rates.
Underpeforming the most among the major stock proxies was the Nasdaq Comp, which dipped into the red late in the session, weighed down in part by the stocks of computer makers and semiconductor companies. The Comp eventually closed lower.
The Comp slipped 0.97, or 0.04%, to 2688.18 after yesterday's 1.6% decline. It had traded as high as 2729.30 intraday. The Comp is now 7.8% off its all-time high, which it set on Oct. 11.
The wake of
warning last night that a 25% jump in memory-chip component prices would probably hit its third-quarter profit margins helped sink shares of PC makers. The
Philadelphia Stock Exchange Computer Box Maker Index
first predicted in an Oct. 6
story that a Taiwan supply crunch might hurt Dell's results. Dell was also most active on the
Nasdaq Stock Market
with a whopping 80.8 million shares changing hands.
In addition to Dell, some other Nasdaq tech-stock heavyweights ended lower.
traded down ahead of its earnings report. After the close, Mister Softee posted earnings of 38 cents a share, four cents ahead of the
First Call/Thomson Financial
As for the
Dow Jones Industrial Average
, it rallied 88.65, or 0.9%, to 10,204.93. The Dow traded as high as 10,335.37 during the session.
Johnson & Johnson
was the biggest positive influence on the Dow, while
was the largest drag on the blue-chip average.
gained 7.19, or 0.6%, to 1261.32. The S&P 500 peaked intraday at 1279.30.
rose 2.03, or 0.5%, to 410.93.
Internet stocks got some wind back in their lungs after the body blows they suffered yesterday.
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
index jumped 9.58, or 1.4%, to 679.44.
Red Hots index was basically unchanged on the day, up 0.02, or 0.01%, to 201.55. The 20-stock index tracks action in particularly volatile stocks and is meant to measure so-called hot money.
The 30-year Treasury bond slipped. It was off 11/32 to 97 1/32, yielding 6.35%.
While the CPI numbers were largely greeted with cheer, the numbers don't mean the
out of the rate-raising business, according to some.
"The simple fact is, retail inflation is running at a 2.6% pace over the year and has accelerated to a 2.8% rate during the first nine months of the year," wrote Joel Naroff, president of
Naroff Economic Advisors
in a comment. "In 1998, the overall inflation rate was 1.6%, the number that everyone concentrated on. In comparison, the core is up 2% for the year and 1.9% for the first nine months, below the 2.4% posted in 1998."
"Now, everyone is concentrating on the core. The reality is that you cannot have it both ways and with the overall index filled with factors that are not unwinding, it can definitely be stated that inflation is rising. And that is what the Fed will be considering when the FOMC meeting next month."
The bottom line? "It still looks like a move on November 16 is in the offing," the economist wrote.
Meanwhile, Fed Chairman
was in the news today. Greenspan, in a
speech entitled "Do efficient financial markets contribute to financial crises?" didn't spark much market reaction, unlike his comments
Thursday night which helped sideswipe the market the next day.
Bank stocks, which have suffered horribly over the last couple of months, soared for the second straight day after being one of the market's leaders yesterday. The
Philadelphia Stock Exchange/KBW Bank Index
Elsewhere in financials, brokerage stocks rallied. The
American Stock Exchange Broker/Dealer Index
Two notable new issues enjoyed successful debuts.
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia
hopped about 98% in its debut.
The other winner came from the world of grappling. The
World Wresting Federation
And in the maudlin anniversary department, 12 years ago today was Black Monday.
Dave Eberhart analyst at
Optima Investment Research
in Chicago, has a relatively grim view of the market looking ahead. Going forward, Eberhart sees more selling into rallies, something that has been the thing to do in the market lately.
"I think we've got a ways to go on the downside," he said.
On Friday, before staging its rally thanks to the stock market's crumbling action, the yield on the long bond hit 6.365%, a two-year high, said Eberhart.
"The general trend for the bond market is down still," he said.
Overall, while the analyst sees more negatives than positives, he did point to some bright spots in the market today.
On the plus side, drug, health care and financial stocks, along with insurance issues turned in a solid performance. As for the financials, he said there was probably some bargain hunting going on in those stocks.
Eberhart pegged support on the December S&P futures contract in the 1257 to 1253 area. Meanwhile, significant resistance for the contract lies at 1300, he said.
New York Stock Exchange
trading, 906 million shares were exchanged while advancing stocks beat decliners 1,610 to 1,400. On the
Nasdaq Stock Market
, 1.10 billion shares traded while winners vanquished losers 2,125 to 1,771. New 52-week lows beat new highs 264 to 18 on the Big Board and by 133 to 44 in over-the-counter trading.
On the Big Board,
was most active with 20.5 million shares changing hands. It fell 1 56 3/8.
Among other indices, the
Dow Jones Transportation Average
gained 16.14, or 0.6%, to 2860.21; the
Dow Jones Utility Average
fell 3.44, or 1.2%, to 295.08; while the
American Stock Exchange Composite Index
rose 1.43, or 0.2%, to 775.92.
Elsewhere in North American equities, the
Toronto Stock Exchange 300
fell 14.29 to 6853.95 and the
Mexican Stock Exchange IPC Index
jumped 143.01, or 2.9%, to 5050.48.
Tuesday's Company Report
Earnings estimates from First Call/Thomson Financial; earnings reported on a diluted basis unless otherwise specified. New highs and lows on a closing basis unless otherwise specified.
Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures
Coca-Cola Bottling Consolidated
rose 1/2 to 55 11/32 after it said it will assume a 100% stake in certain selling territories in the Carolinas, costing roughly $320 million. Coca-Cola Bottling Consolidated has been a joint business partner with
Piedmont Coca-Cola Bottling Partnership
, which has franchise territories in both North and South Carolina. According to chairman and CEO J. Frank Harrison, Coca-Cola Bottling is in talks to buy Coca-Cola's 50% stake in Piedmont. Shares of Coca-Cola rose 1 13/16 to 52 13/16.
slipped 3/16 to 39 7/8 after it announced plans to take the remaining 32% interest in
, in a stock and cash transaction valued at $205 million.
El Paso Energy
lost 1 1/16 to 40 5/16 after saying it has completed its proposed purchase of
Crystal Gas Storage
, for roughly $224 million in stock, debt and options.
fell 2 1/8 to 50 1/4 after announcing last night it plans to buy
in a stock transaction valued at $2.1 billion.
Republic New York
fell 1/4 to 61 11/16 after it said its shareholder vote on a $10.3 billion proposed merger with Britain-based
has been postponed for the third time, due to an ongoing investigation of Republic's futures brokerage division. Republic said it would push the meeting back to Nov. 30 from Oct. 29, in order to complete a probe into the bank's relations with New Jersey money manager Martin Armstrong, who is accused of securities fraud.
Earnings/revenue reports and previews
Dell dropped 2 7/8, or 7%, to 38 1/2 after cautioning yesterday that a 25% increase in computer memory-chip component prices used in its PCs would probably dent its third-quarter profit margins. CFO Thomas Meredith said that although he sees the price hike as a short-term problem, the company's third-quarter operating margins would be affected. Dell refused to say if stress on profit margins would trigger lower
earnings per share
cut its rating on Dell to attractive from buy.
climbed 4 5/8, or 6.5%, to 76 1/8 after it reported third-quarter earnings of 54 cents a share, in line with the 24-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 47 cents.
inched up 1/4, or 7.1%, to 3 3/4 after it posted a third-quarter loss of 20 cents a share, narrower than the single-analyst estimate of a 22-cent loss per share and down from a year-ago 24-cent loss.
edged up 7/16 to 24 1/16 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 52 cents a share, in line with the six-analyst estimate and up from a year-ago 46 cents a share.
was unchanged at 42 5/8 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 57 cents a share before charges, better than the five-analyst estimate of 55 cents, and up from the year-ago 42 cents a share.
climbed 3/16 to 5 11/16 after posting a third-quarter loss of 53 cents a share, narrower than the two-analyst estimate of 55 cents but wider than a year-ago loss of 23 cents.
added 3/16 to 22 7/8 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 24 cents a share, beating the 17-analyst estimate of 21 cents but down from the year-ago 28 cents.
Coca-Cola Enterprises also announced that John Alm would become president, as of Jan. 1. Alm would replace the retiring current president and CEO Henry Schimberg.
jumped 4 1/2, or 9%, to 54 7/16, after reporting third-quarter earning of 58 cents a share, a penny better than the 11-analyst estimate and up from a year-ago 42 cents.
lost 1 15/16, or 8%, to 22 7/16 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 24 cents a share, better than the 12-analyst estimate of 21 cents and up from a year-ago 2 cents a share.
added 3/8 to 23 5/16 after it reported third-quarter earnings of 31 cents a share, a penny better than the six-analyst estimate and up from a year-ago 27 cents a share.
shed 12 9/16, or 15.2%, to 70 after it posted third-quarter earnings of $1.45 per share, greatly below the 10-analyst estimate of $1.56 but above the year-ago 80 cents a share, which included a restructuring charge.
rose 5/16 to 19 1/8 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 35 cents a share, in line with the four-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 32 cents a share.
rose 1/2 to 29 15/16 after posting third-quarter earnings of 83 cents a share, beating the three-analyst estimate of 81 cents and up from a year-ago 76 cents a share.
fell 3/16 to 26 1/16 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 48 cents a share, in line with the six-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 46 cents.
lost 5/8 to 22 1/16 after posting third-quarter earnings of 46 cents a share, in line with the five-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 43 cents.
rose 13/16 to 33 3/8 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 60 cents a share, beating the eight-analyst estimate of 58 cents and the year-ago 23 cents.
lost 1/16 to 11 7/8 after it reported third-quarter earnings of 49 cents a share, missing the three-analyst estimate of 50 cents but up from the year-ago 31 cents a share.
fell 6 3/16, or 9.3%, despite reporting fourth-quarter earnings of $1.38 a share, in line with the nine-analyst estimate but above the year-ago $1.09 a share.
rose 1 7/16, or 7.2%, to 21 1/2 after reporting third-quarter earnings of 27 cents a share, falling below the 17-analyst estimate of 31 cents a share and down from the year-ago 38 cents.
rose 7/16 to 35 1/4 after reporting third-quarter earnings of 51 cents a share, better than the five-analyst estimate of 48 cents, and up from a year-ago 37 cents. The company said its acquisition pipeline is strong.
gained 7/16 to 32 11/16 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 46 cents a share, in line with the 22-analyst estimate and up from a year-ago 41 cents.
climbed 1 1/8, or 6.3%, to 19 after it reported third-quarter earnings of 24 cents a share, a penny better than the five-analyst estimate and up from a year-ago 17 cents.
gained 1/2 to 26 1/4 after it posted third-quarter earnings of $1.96 a share, missing the 12-analyst estimate of $1.98 but up from the year-ago loss of $2.91.
gained 1 13/16 after it reported pro forma fourth-quarter earnings of 18 cents a share, beating the 11-analyst estimate of 16 cents and the year-ago 17 cents.
People's Heritage Bank
rose 3/4 to 17 3/8 after posting third-quarter earnings of 41 cents a share, in line with the nine-analyst estimate and up from a year-ago 35 cents a share.
climbed 2 3/8, or 6.3%, to 39 15/16 after posting third-quarter operating income of 23 cents a share excluding the impact of a $310 million pretax charge. The 24-analyst estimate called for earnings of 21 cents a share, while the year-ago operating income was 13 cents a share. Including the charge, earnings in the latest quarter were 18 cents a share.
Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown
upped its rating on Pfizer to buy from market perform.
inched up 1/4 to 30 3/4 after it reported third-quarter underlying earnings of 87 cents a share, in line with the 12-analyst estimate and up from underlying earnings of 84 cents a year ago. The company said underlying results exclude several pretax charges. Including the charges, the company earned 84 cents a share, compared with a year-ago 81 cents.
fell 4 7/8, or 8.1%, to 50 1/4 after it posted third-quarter earnings from operations of 58 cents a share, a penny better than the eight-analyst estimate and up from 48 cents a year ago.
was unchanged at 16 9/16 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 48 cents a share, in line with the single-analyst estimate but up from 40 cents a year ago.
climbed 5/8, or 7.6%, to 9 1/8 after reporting third-quarter earnings of 50 cents a share, beating the three-analyst estimate of 42 cents and up from a year ago pro-forma 25 cents.
, formerly known as
, dropped 10 3/8, or 38.6%, to 16 5/8 despite posting third-quarter earnings of 14 cents a share before charges, above the 10-analyst estimate of 11 cents and up from the year-ago 6 cents a share. The company announced plans to move its operations to the Internet.
climbed 13/16 to 30 13/16 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 53 cents a share, falling below the 18-analyst estimate of 70 cents and the year-ago 67 cents.
jumped 2 1/2, or 7.9%, to 34 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 33 cents a share, beating the five-analyst estimate of 30 cents and up from the year-ago 24 cents
fell 4 15/16, or 5.9%, to 79 1/2 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 51 cents a share, handily beating the 25-analyst estimate of 43 cents and the year-ago 19 cents, which included a pretax charge of $14 million for depression of fixed assets.
was unchanged at 31 1/32 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 44 cents a share, a penny shy of the five-analyst estimate, and up from a year-ago 39 cents a share, before charges.
climbed 2 1/8, or 5.4%, to 41 5/8 after it posted third-quarter earnings of 57 cents a share, in line with the 27-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 45 cents.
Offerings and stock actions
climbed 9/16 to 23 3/16 after it said it set a 16 million-share repurchasing plan.
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia leaped 17 9/16, or 97%, to 35 9/16 after making its trading debut. Morgan Stanley priced the 7.2 million-share IPO top-range at $18.
added 3/4 to 29 5/16 after it said it set a stock buyback for up to 4 million common shares.
advanced 11 7/16, or 71.4%, to 27 7/16 after its first day of trading.
Salomon Smith Barney
priced the 6.84 million-share IPO top-range at $16.
jumped 17 7/16, or 96.85, to 35 1/2 after making its trading debut. Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley priced the 4.1 million-share IPO above range at $18.
The World Wrestling Federation bounced 8 1/4, or 48.5%, to 25 1/4 in its debut. Bear Stearns prices the IPO above-range at $17.
upgraded shares of
to intermediate-term buy from accumulate, while
Credit Suisse First Boston
upped its rating to buy from hold.
Salomon Smith Barney
sliced its rating on Lexmark to neutral from buy, based on the company's warning for slow fourth-quarter revenue growth. Lexmark shares jumped 7 3/16, or 11%, to 72 3/16.
Bear Stearns sliced its rating on
to attractive from buy. Gateway sank 4 5/8, or 8.9%, to 46 7/8.
upped its rating on
to buy from market performer. PaineWebber upped the stock's fiscal 2000 EPS estimate to $1.27 from $1.10. Lattice Semiconductors climbed 1 7/8, or 6.5%, to 30.
Warburg Dillon Read
upped its rating of
to strong buy from buy. Lucent shares slid 1/8 to 57 1/4.
Merrill Lynch upped its rating on
to buy and set a price target of 90. Shares of MicroStrategy jumped 12 1/8, or 17.1%, to 82 3/4.
Salomon Smith Barney downgraded the shares of
to neutral from buy. Micron Technology plummeted 5 1/4, or 7.6%, to 63.
Credit Suisse First Boston raised its rating on
to buy from hold. Yesterday, the drug store chain said its chairman and CEO Martin Grass stepped down from his roles and would be replaced by president and COO Timothy Noonan. Shares of Rite Aid mounted 1 13/16, or 18.85, to 11 7/8.
Warburg Dillon Read rolled out coverage of
with a strong buy rating and a price target of 55. Rayonier slipped 1/2 to 36 11/16.
Banc of America Securities
upped its rating on
to buy from market performer. Shares of Suiza advanced 11/16 to 36 1/8.
The U.S. said it has indicted
division for a machine tool agreement with China five years ago. According to the indictment, McDonnell Douglas sold machinery to a state-owned Chinese aerospace firm called
. The machinery, which was authorized by the U.S. government solely for commercial purposes, was routed to a military plant that manufactures missiles. McDonnell Douglas denied that it has any committed crimes. Boeing climbed 5/8 to 42 3/4.
hopped 7/16 to 118 1/16 despite its appliances division announcing that it was recalling roughly 3.1 million
brand dishwashers that could be possible fire hazards. GE, along with the
U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
, said that models made between April 1983 and January 1989 contain a slide switch that can melt and ignite over time.
bounced 1 3/16, or 10.1%, to 13 after it said it plans to hike Web-based advertising and email marketing rates.
Securities and Exchange Commission
requested that the
American Stock Exchange
Chicago Board of Options
Pacific Stock Exchange
Philadelphia Stock Exchange
establish an electronic link that would guarantee investors the best prices possible. The SEC ordered the exchange to propose a plan for the link within 90 days.
, the parent company to this site, has tapped Thomas Clarke as its president and COO. Clarke served as the former CEO of
Thomson Financial Investor Relations