Market Update: J.P. Morgan Today's Big Dow Winner, Nasdaq Ends Lower

<LI>Hewlett-Packard has bad day.</LI><LI>PRI Automation hit by earnings warning.</LI>
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Tech stocks fell into the red this afternoon and stayed there, after holding a modest rally throughout most of the session. The Dow, though, struggled to get into the positive column and ended near the high mark for the day.

The Dow ended up 39 to 11,233. Blue-chip

J.P. Morgan

(JPM) - Get Report

gained some late momentum and ended up 5.1% --the day's biggest winner. The shares ended at a new all-time high close of $177.88.

Hewlett-Packard

(HWP)

, though, lost 1.3% after yesterday's news that it was negotiating a possible acquisition of

PricewaterhouseCooper's

consulting division.

The tech-laden

Nasdaq fell 47 to 3849. The index earlier today enjoyed a relief rally following yesterday's losses, which stemmed from a Wall Street analyst's concerns that Big Blue

IBM's

(IBM) - Get Report

third- and fourth-quarter revenue would be hurt by foreign exchange rates.

Today,

PRI Automation

(PRIA)

, a semiconductor equipment maker, was the latest tech to issue a fourth-quarter earnings warning. The company, which plummeted 39.4%, cited supply-chain problems in its factory systems unit as the culprit.

TheStreet.com

wrote a

separate story on the company.

The Street.com Internet Index

ended down 5 to 793.

Elsewhere, the broader

S&P 500 slipped 7 to 1482, while the small-cap

Russell 2000

was down 1 to 532.

Sector Watch

The

Dow Jones Utility Average

shed earlier gains after hitting another intra-day high of 399.02. Spiking energy prices shot

Duke Power

(DUK) - Get Report

to another all-time high of $83.75, while

Peco

(PE) - Get Report

topped to $56.75.

The

American Stock Exchange Oil & Gas Index

jumped to a new all-time high of 548.79 before falling fractionally lower. Yesterday, oil stocks soared following

OPEC's

decision to raise output by 800,000 barrels per day. The increase wasn't enough to drive down the price of oil, which hit $35.85 a barrel.

The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Oil Service Index

also hit a new high of 143.98, before tapering off 1%.

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Bonds/Economy

Treasuries are lower on little news. With no major economic releases on the calendar, bond traders are keeping an eye on oil, which is lower so far, and on the corporate bond calendar, which is unusually heavy. Heavy corporate bond issuance can put pressure on Treasury prices.

A couple of

Fed

governors have piped up at the

National Association for Business Economics

conference underway in Chicago, but their comments largely cancel each other out.

Uber-dove

Robert McTeer

, president of the

Dallas Fed

, in an interview in today's

Wall Street Journal

, raised the specter of interest-rate cuts, assuming that energy prices peak and the inflation rate declines. But

Chicago Fed

President

Michael Moskow

in comments to reporters this morning said the risk of too-high inflation is still greater than the risk of too-slow growth. Neither McTeer nor Moskow is a voting member of the

Federal Open Market Committee this year.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury note lately was down 3/32 at 99 24/32, lifting its yield to 5.783%.

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