Financials, Oil Stocks Power Dow to Record Territory

The tech and Internet sectors are still languishing in the red.
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Financial and oil stocks powered the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

this afternoon into record territory while technology and Internet stocks fell.

American Express

(AXP) - Get Report

and

Exxon

(XON) - Get Report

were the biggest boosts to the Dow, which rose 81 to 10,926.

The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was down 13 to 2537.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was down 9 to 649.

Amazon.com

(AMZN) - Get Report

was getting buried. It was down 20 3/8, or 11%, to 17u8i 1/8. For more on Amazon, please see this morning's

Tech Stock Update.

The

S&P 500

was up 2 to 1353. The

Russell 2000

was down 1 to 432.

The 30-year Treasury bond was up 29/32 to 96 2/32, yielding 5.52%. Bonds rallied in response to the news that the

Employment Cost Index

, which measures the quarterly rate of growth in wages, salaries and benefit costs, rose only 0.4% during the first quarter, far below the 0.8% forecast.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, advancers were beating decliners 1,522 to 1,316 on 609 million shares. On the

Nasdaq Stock Market

, losers were beating winners 1,916 to 1,836 on 666 million shares.

Utility stocks were sporting solid gains. The

Dow Jones Utility Average

was up 1%.

On the NYSE, 69 issues had set new 52-week highs while 18 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 54 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 24.

On the Big Board,

America Online

(AOL)

was most active, with 27 million shares changing hands. It was down 3 1/4 to 139 3/4.

On the Nasdaq,

Applied Materials

(AMAT) - Get Report

was most active with 20 million shares changing hands. It was down 3 5/16, or 6%, to 50 15/16.

Sector Focus: Oil and Oil Service

Oil and oil service stocks continued their winning ways this afternoon, padding the already impressive gains they've enjoyed over the last couple of months.

Oil service stocks reversed their intraday losses and were modestly higher this afternoon. The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Oil Service Index

was up 2%.

The

Chicago Board Options Exchange Oil Index

dipped at the open, but it didn't take long to reach positive territory and was soaring this afternoon. It was up 3%.

Meanwhile, June crude oil futures were up fractionally to $18.46 a barrel.

Turning to analyst action today in the oil patch,

Deutsche Bank Securities

downgraded

Texaco

(TX) - Get Report

,

Chevron

(CHV)

,

Mobil

(MOB)

and

Exxon

(XON) - Get Report

.

Elsewhere,

PaineWebber

downgraded Texaco,

Unocal

(UCL)

and

Conoco

(COC)

.

All of the above-mentioned stocks were higher on the day. Mobil was one of the biggest gainers on the Big Board. It was up 5 1/8, or 5%, to 107 1/4.

1:01 p.m.: Midday Musings: Wall Street's Story Stays the Same: Rotation, Rotation, Rotation

11:51 a.m.: Dow Clings to Record Territory as Other Indices Languish in the Red

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was the only major market barometer above water late this morning as technology and Internet stocks sold off.

The Dow was up 17 to 10,862.

The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was down 45 to 2506.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was down 31 to 627.

The

S&P 500

was down 7 to 1344. The

Russell 2000

was down 3 to 431.

The 30-year Treasury bond was up 24/32 to 95 29/32, yielding 5.53%, but off its session highs. The long bond rallied thanks to a tame

Employment Cost Index

report which showed inflation remained asleep. The

Labor Department

reported that the ECI in the first-quarter rose a modest 0.4%, well below the 0.8% increase economists predicted.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, advancers were beating decliners 1,436 to 1,240 on 389 million shares. On the

Nasdaq Stock Market

, losers were leading winners 1,804 to 1,603 on 433 million shares.

On the NYSE, 49 issues had set new 52-week highs while 15 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 44 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 14.

On the Big Board,

America Online

(AOL)

was most active, with 19 million shares changing hands. It was down 9 to 134.

On the Nasdaq,

Amazon.com

(AMZN) - Get Report

was most active with 13 million shares changing hands. It was down 26 1/8, or 13%, to 167 1/2, in the wake of posting its quarterly results

yesterday after the close. Today

BT Alex. Brown

downgraded the stock to buy from strong buy, while

Credit Suisse First Boston

reiterated its buy rating on Amazon.

Tech Focus

Tech sector barometers were weaker. The

Nasdaq 100

was down 2%, while the

Morgan Stanley High-Tech 35

was 3% lower. The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Semiconductor Index

was down 3%. The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Computer Box Maker Index

was down 1%.

Lexmark

(LXK)

, a printer maker, set a 2-for-1 stock split. It was down 2 to 122 7/8.

Informatica

(INFA)

, a software company, was surging in its first day of trading. It was up 8 13/16, or 55%, to 24 15/16. CS First Boston priced the company's 2.75-million share IPO yesterday at $16.

10:54 a.m.: Dow Back in Record Territory

After taking a bit of a swat after the opening bell, the blue-chip

Dow Jones Industrial Average

shook off some weakness and was solidly higher this morning and in record territory again.

Providing the most fuel for the Dow's jump were financials

American Express

(AXP) - Get Report

and

J.P. Morgan

(JPM) - Get Report

, which rose 3 11/16 to 136 3/4 and 4 to 139 13/16, respectively.

Meanwhile, technology and Internet stocks were mostly lower, but off their worst levels of the session.

The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was down 25 to 2526.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was down 18 to 640.

Amazon.com

(AMZN) - Get Report

was the biggest loser in the index, down 20 , or 10%, to 173 13/16, after posting its quarterly results

yesterday after the close. Amazon was most active on the

Nasdaq Stock Market

, with 9 million shares changing hands.

The

S&P 500

was down 2 to 1349. The

Russell 2000

was down 1 to 433.

The 30-year Treasury bond was up 20/32 to 95 25/32, yielding 5.54%.

The

Labor Department

reported that the

Employment Cost Index

in the first-quarter rose a modest 0.4%, well below what economists predicted.

Peter Coolidge, managing director of trading at

Brean Murray Foster Securities

, says he expects another volatile session in Internet and technology stocks.

He noted that after an initial selloff, tech and Internet stocks have stabilized while the overall market has headed north.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, advancers were beating decliners 1,499 to 1,063 on 255 million shares. On the Nasdaq, winners were beating losers 1,602 to 1,533 on 295 million shares.

On the NYSE, 43 issues had set new 52-week highs while 11 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 38 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 11.

On the Big Board,

America Online

(AOL)

was most active, with 11 million shares changing hands. It was down 4 7/16 to 138 9/16.

10:03 a.m.: Stocks Mixed as Treasury Market Rallies

The major market averages were mixed, as Treasuries rallied on bullish economic data.

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was up 49 to 10,894. The

S&P 500

was up 3 to 1354. The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was down 9 to 2542. The

Russell 2000

was down fractionally at 433.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was down 9 to 649.

The 30-year Treasury bond was up 28/32 to 96 1/32, yielding 5.53%, after the

Labor Department

reported that the

Employment Cost Index

in the first-quarter rose a modest 0.4%, well below what economists predicted, showing inflation remains asleep.

Most Up at Open -- NYSE

Telebras (TBH) , up 2 1/4 to 90

.

Most Up at Open -- Nasdaq

VeriSign (VRSN) - Get Report, up 5 1/2 to 108 5/16

.

Most Down at Open -- NYSE

Chevron (CHV) , down 2 to 100 7/8

.

Most Down at Open -- Nasdaq

Amazon.com (AMZN) - Get Report, down 21 1/16 to 172 7/16

: The company after the close reported a first-quarter loss of 23 cents a share, 6 cents narrower than the 21-analyst

First Call

view but deeper than the year-ago loss of 7 cents. Analysts, however, are growing impatient with Amazon's plans to boost its spending aggressively, deepen losses and push profitability further into the future. TheStreet.com wrote about Amazon's report in a story

last night.