(Updated from 3:12 p.m. EDT)
Dow Jones Industrial Average had a rough time of it today, being hurt by weakness in
Even without those two stocks, it wasn't much of a day for the 30-stock average. Weakness in brokerages, PC makers and chip stocks held down the major averages; but the
S&P 500 and
Nasdaq Composite Index ended in positive territory.
The Dow ended 50 lower to 11,183; the S&P was up 3 to 1485, and the Comp was up 45 to 3894. The small-cap
Russell 2000 edged up to 534.
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
, or the
DOT index, was up 6 to 799.
Both the Dow and the Nasdaq are feeling the impact of Intel's losses. The company was downgraded, along with fellow semiconductor maker
Advanced Micro Devices
Banc of America Securities
analyst Richard Whittington. He broadly cited concerns over demand from PC makers and in the case of Intel, delivery problems. Intel was lately down 5.9%, while AMD lost 5.7%. Together, Intel and H-P account for 54 points of negative drag on the Dow.
wrote about the two companies in a
separate piece this afternoon.
Concerns over weakening PC demand are being highlighted this morning by the earnings
warning from electronic components maker
, which said fiscal first-quarter profits would be lower than expected due to diminished demand. SCI is one of the
New York Stock Exchange's biggest losers today, dropping 15.9% to $47.13.
SCI's two largest PC
customers are hurting.
, down 4.8%, and Hewlett-Packard, off 3.4%.
With the announcement that
plans to purchase
, the takeover juice has been squeezed out of the brokerage names, and they're dropping.
After a hefty round of consolidation that culminated with yesterday's Chase-J.P. Morgan announcement, brokerage stocks are down. There's a sense among traders that the wave of
consolidation may be nearing an end, and if that's the case, the sense is that these stocks are overvalued.
Two of the market's recent big winners, are down today, with
, losing 5.6%, and
, off 2.6%. J.P. Morgan itself is down on the merger news, losing 3.4%.
was flying, up 23.3%, on speculation that the market maker could be
Morgan Stanley Dean Witter
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Nasdaq Telecommunications Index
powered higher on the strength of a 3.8% gain in
and other components. The telecom index lately gained 1.8%.
Transportation stocks were having a strong day. The
Dow Jones Transportation Average
rose 1.4%, and the
Amex Stock Exchange Airline Index
gained 2.4%, and
was lately up 1.8%.
Dow Jones Utility Average
hit a new all-time high of 400.06 today. It was lately slipping 0.1%.
Crude oil has dropped a bit from its recent high, lately at $33.85.
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Bond prices are higher thanks to lower oil prices and growing optimism about the monetary policy outlook. Treasury traders are also paying close attention to the corporate bond market, where more than usual new issues are competing for investor dollars.
While there are no major economic releases today,
fed funds futures are discounting lower odds than ever that the
Fed will hike interest rates again this year. The December fed funds contract is putting the odds of a hike in the rate to 6.75% from 6.5% currently at just 5%, down from 21% yesterday.
The benchmark 10-year Treasury note was lately up 9/32 at 100 2/32, dropping its yield to 5.741%.
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