After soaring heavenward together at the open, the specter of oil and the euro frightened the
Dow Jones Industrial Average from its perch. The Dow was lately narrowly in the red, off 8 to 10,801. The
Nasdaq Composite Index was still holding on to its early vigor, however, up 60.6 to 3787.
Oil and euro threats could also deflate a tech bounce later today. Yesterday, a strong rally in semiconductors was unable to sustain itself and sputtered into the close.
With earnings pre-announcement season upon us, the combination of a slowing economy, rising fuel prices, a depressed euro and concerns over declining demand for semiconductors and PCs has created a veritable battlefield for stocks in recent action. The pre-announcement season kicked off last week and should last until the end of September, and investors have been quick to punish companies that warn of earnings weakness. Between Friday and Monday's action, the Nasdaq plummeted 187 to 3727, while the Dow gave up 279 to 10,809.
Most of the Nasdaq's big-cap movers were moving up today, including
. Cisco was up 1%, Dell was up 3%, Intel was up 5.2% and Microsoft was 1.5% higher.
And online book retailer
Barnes & Noble.com
was one of the Nasdaq's most active stocks after announcing a marketing deal with
this morning. The bookseller was lately up 34.3% to $6.13, while Yahoo! was 1.8% higher to $106.88.
Intel, which was getting a powerful boost from a
Banc of America
upgrade on the stock this morning, was padding the Dow's fall, adding some 16 points of upside.
was also doing its part, lately up 1.3% and contributing 12.6 points to Dow.
J.P. Morgan was soaring along with the rest of the brokerage stocks after
reported earnings 11 cents better than analysts' estimates.
In the world of blue-chip industrials Dow component
was oil's first victim today. The company issued a profit warning Monday after the close, citing higher energy costs and softening markets. Alcoa was off 3.9% to $25.94.
wrote about Alcoa in a
separate article. Despite the news,
reaffirmed its buy rating on the stock this morning, saying the stock is significantly undervalued at current prices.
also warned that it sees lower-than-expected 2000 results due to a weaker euro and slower demand for infrastructure-related equipment. The company's shares were lower in off-hours action, and the stock was getting hit this morning, off 9.8% to $35.88.
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Following the Intel upgrade, semiconductor stocks were soaring, with the
Philadelphia Stock Exchange Semiconductor Index
lately up 3.8% to 988.
Oil stocks hit a bump in the road after continuing 10-year highs in oil prices had generated an incredible run. The
American Stock Exchange Oil & Gas Index
was lately down 1.6% to 542.1, while the
American Stock Exchange Natural Gas Index
was 1.8% lower to 230.
Brokerage stocks were getting a bounce from Goldman Sachs earnings, with the
American Stock Exchange Broker/Dealer Index
up 1% to 649.
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The 10-year Treasury note was lately down 1/32 at 99 4/32, yielding 5.867%.
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