So much for
The blue-chip Dow, which was earlier above the 11,000 mark, and the
Nasdaq Composite Index were off their highs of the day -- but still firmly on the upside.
Volume was on the lighter side with not much news to drive stocks today. Investors are awaiting
second-quarter earnings report , which is scheduled to be posted after the closing bell.
The stock was lately the most actively traded stock on the Nasdaq and was up 2.4%. The networking company's known for beating estimates by a penny, but some concern was raised recently after CEO John Chambers
made comments about business in January being "a little bit slow."
Also attracting some attention was
Applied Micro Circuits
, which was falling 12.7% after the chipmaker said it had some order
cancellations in the past week. The company, however, said it was not altering its earnings or revenue targets for its March or June quarters.
was up a bit after spending much of the day on the downside. The company was hit by a note this morning from
that said Amazon could face a creditor squeeze in the second half of 2001 because of its low levels of
working capital . A spokesman for Amazon called the note "silly." The Street agreed, lifting the stock 3.5% despite losses this morning.
Fiber-optic components maker
was getting a boost from news that U.S. regulators approved its deal to take over
. The company was granted the clearance after it agreed to sell a laser manufacturing plant to
for $3 billion.
Mickey was dancing and singing today after
managed to beat first-quarter estimates by a penny. It said it was helped by improvements in its theme park and from Regis and his millionaire magic with Disney's ABC network. Last week, the company announced that it was abandoning its Web portal Go.com. Disney was lately up 4.5%.
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Biotechs were bounding upward.
Nasdaq Biotechnology Index
was 3.4% higher. The sector had plenty of reason to celebrate. Yesterday,
reported a loss narrower than expected and was being duly rewarded.
was popping 12.5% after it received a patent extending its patent protection over cancer-fighting antibodies.
The chip sector was making some headway after losses yesterday. The
Philadelphia Semiconductor Stock Index
was lately up 1.2%.
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Treasury notes are trading slightly lower as the market awaits the auction of $32 billion worth of new and reopened Treasury debt. Dealers are selling to create space in their portfolios for the latest available issues due on the market later this afternoon. The long bond slid further in reaction to the advice of a
Bond Market Association
committee that its issue be continued.
Last week, the Treasury Borrowing Advisory Committee of the association, composed of investors, had suggested that the 30-year bond be removed after its August sale. But yesterday, the association's Primary Dealer Committee, composed of dealers that trade directly with the
Federal Reserve in the Treasury market, advised against it. They want to lessen the cost of buying back older debt. The committee also said that the 30-year remained the most suitable security for long-term bond investors.
The benchmark 10-year
Treasury note lately was down 6/32 to 104 3/32, raising its yield to 5.197%.
In economic news, the
BTM-UBSW Weekly Chain Store Sales Index
chart ) was down 0.1% for the week ended Feb.3 after having advanced 0.6% the previous week. The slight fall was due to a decrease in consumer spending, with no retailer exceeding the weekly sales target. The yearly moving average rose 3.7% from its reading 12 months earlier, although it was down from the 3.9% rise recorded in the end of January. Analysts expect sales to hold steady since interest rates are lower and investors have been freeing up cash by refinancing their homes.
Redbook Retail Average
chart ) rose for the fifth week of January. It is up 2.2% from its value in the closing week of December. Sales for the month rose 3.2% from the same period a year ago. Sales are expected to rise 3.1% in February. Sales numbers stayed healthy thanks to heavy promotions and heavy discounts.
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