(Updated from 4:20 p.m.)
The market did its best to shrug off the latest bad news from corporate America today, eking out small gains on the Dow and Nasdaq even though the losers outpaced winners on both the Comp and the New York Stock Exchange.
Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day up by 65.38 points, or 0.6%, to 10,241.02, close to its session highs of 10,274, while the
Nasdaq posted a mere 9.25 point gain, or 0.5%, to 1972.04. The
S&P 500, which tracks the broader market, did the worst today, losing 1.34 points, or 0.1%, to 1180.18.
A range of companies, from
, spilled their guts about shortfalls in the past 24 hours, and the market gyrated up and down for most of the day.
"Stocks sold off sharply yesterday afternoon, bringing them close to oversold levels," said John Peluso, head of listed trading at
. "People are starting get ready to put their toes back in the water."
In one sign that investors are willing to get their feet wet, Compaq closed higher by 5% to $14.45. Last night, the PC manufacturer
cut its revenue forecast for the second quarter and announced job cuts, blaming deteriorating conditions in the European market, price competition and an industry slowdown.
But Comverse and Emerson both dropped sharply, hitting new 52-week lows. Comverse closed down by 33.5% to $25.95, and Emerson lost 13.8% to $52.93.
At the start of second-quarter earnings season, investors are seeking clarity about the earnings outlook. After the closing bell today, the picture should get a little clearer, as two closely watched companies --
and Internet portal
-- report results. Ahead of those announcements, Motorola closed up by 1.1% to $15.67, while Yahoo! lost 4.5% to $17.03.
Reporting season is beginning to swing into gear. Yesterday after the market closed,
reported earnings and revenue that met analysts' expectations, but the company
lowered its third-quarter outlook. It said third-quarter revenue would be in the range of $96 million to $102 million. That's well below both the $135.2 million in revenue last year and the $108.1 million expected by analysts polled by
Thomson Financial/First Call
. Today, DoubleClick closed down by 16.1% to $10.09.
Investors grew increasingly worried about the earnings outlook yesterday, and stocks fell across the board, bringing the major market averages to their
lowest levels since mid-April. Today, volume was average on the NYSE, at 1.4 billion, and light on the Nasdaq, at 1.7 billion.
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