New York Yankees
swept up Broadway for a
victory lap, Wall Street was having its own parade. Major proxies marched solidly higher as the strength of yesterday's broad rally easily spilled over in morning trading.
Technology stocks were at the head of the pack, with the
Nasdaq Composite Index
up 98, or 3.4%, to 2973 and on pace for a record close.
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
index was jumping 29, or 3.9%, to 748, while the small-cap
was up 6, or 1.5%, to 429.
Dow Jones Industrial Average
was rising 166, or 1.6%, to 10,788, while the broader
was lifting 29, or 2.2%, to 1372. After a vigorous 227.64-point Dow jump and a 45.73-point S&P leap yesterday, things were looking pretty good for those long.
"This is not a one-day phenomenon -- yesterday felt like the real deal," said Bill Schneider, head of U.S. equity block trading at
Warburg Dillon Read
. "The party goes on." Characterizing yesterday's movement as a "broad and powerful rally" with solid volume, Schneider said there was a lot of pent-up demand and a sense that players had gotten too pessimistic about interest rates.
Investors cheered today's weak report on September
new home sales
, which dropped 12.8% to an 811,000 annual pace from a revised August pace of 930,000. And they were happy to look beyond the higher-than-expected headline number on this morning's
Chicago Purchasing Managers' Index
to concentrate on the good news: The prices-paid component came in at 65.4, down from the previous month's 71. October's headline number came in at 58.8, higher than the 56.8 expected by economists polled by
and up from last month's 53.8.
After two benign economic reports yesterday, today's numbers inspired a further surge in the bond market. The benchmark 30-year Treasury was up 1 7/32 to 99 16/32, its yield at 6.16%. (For more on the fixed-income market, see today's early
Amid the cheering, there are still plenty of skeptics though. Ricky Harrington, chief technical analyst at
referred to last week's agreement on reform of the
act, the longstanding law intended to keep banks, brokers and insurers separate, as one of the major influenced that kicked off a rally, and gave some leadership to financials that we had not seen for a long time. "We've got fairly good breadth and good strength in secondary stocks, but it remains to be seen whether this is a one- to two-week rally," said Harrington.
The financial sector was already relinquishing some of its earlier strength with the
Philadelphia Stock Exchange/KBW Bank Index
up just 0.2%, while the
American Stock Exchange Broker/Dealer Index
was slipping less than a point.
Though Harrington admits the trading range of 10,000 to around 10,900 is certainly wide, he predicted volatility will become more the norm when four new components --
ACTIVE="YES"/> -- are added to the Dow on Monday.
Breadth was strongly positive and volume was extraordinary, especially for a Friday. On the
New York Stock Exchange
advancers were trouncing decliners 2,088 to 855, on 668 million shares, while on the
Nasdaq Stock Market
laggards were beating leaders 2,129 to 1,584 on 845 million shares. New 52-week highs were leapfrogging over new lows 174 to 66 on the Nasdaq, while on the Big Board, new highs were topping new lows 101 to 60 -- a change from the recent trend.
Friday's Midday Watchlist
Tara Murphy and
Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures
was up 10 9/16, or 17.9%, to 69 5/8 after forging an agreement to provide
online telephone and other services through its Web site. The transaction calls for the two companies to develop a joint messaging and communications feature on Go2Net's site that enables users to send and receive voice mail, faxes, e-mail and telephone calls. Net2Phone was up 2 7/16 to 54 7/8.
unveiled its plans to unite its
Ammirati Puris Lintas
Lowe & Partners Worldwide
advertising units. Interpublic said it has tapped Lowe Group Chairman and CEO Frank Lowe to serve in those posts at the new agency. Interpublic was up 1 5/8 to 41 1/8.
launched a $295 million cash takeover offer for the ordinary and savings shares it doesn't already own of Italian hotels operator
. Sheraton already owns 72.91% of Ciga's ordinary shares and 30.85% of its savings shares. Starwood was up 1 3/8, or 6.4%, to 23.
Earnings/revenue reports and previews
Electronic Data Systems
last night posted third-quarter earnings of 51 cents a share, beating the 18-analyst estimate of 49 cents and the year-ago 39 cents, which included charges. It was 5 5/16, or 9.8%, to 59 5/16.
was down 4 1/2, or 19.6%, to 18 7/16 after posting third-quarter earnings of 57 cents a share, which includes two gains that contributed 9 cents to the quarter's earnings. The report beat the 15-analyst estimate of 47 cents but fell below the year-ago 83 cents.
reported third-quarter earnings of 53 cents a share, in line with the nine-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 47 cents. The stock was down 5/16 to 17 1/16.
Offerings and stock actions
after yesterday's close set a 2-for-1 stock split, its seventh such split in seven years. AOL reported that more than 2 million individual investors will get one share for every share they own on Nov. 8, with the remaining shares up for grabs starting Nov. 22. After the split's effective date, the company will have 2.2 billion outstanding shares. According to AOL, a stockholder who purchased 1,000 shares for $11,500 at its IPO and held his position would now own 128,000 shares worth roughly $7.8 million. AOL lately was up 3 to 129 1/2.
said it has set a public offering of subordinate voting shares.
Morgan Stanley Dean Witter
RBC Dominion Securities
have been tapped to underwrite the offering. The stock was up 1 15/16 to 56.
said its lead underwriter,
, will release the lock-up restrictions on 10% of the company's shares on Nov. 2. That will increase eToys' float by as much as 9.5 million shares. The stock was down 6 5/8, or 9.4%, to 64.
Commerzbank Global Equities
to hold from buy. Aegon was up 7/8 to 91 13/16.
Morgan Stanley cut
to outperform from strong buy, based on valuation but raised its price target to 179 from 175. The stock was down 7 1/2 to 153 1/2, retreating after yesterday's run-up.
Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown
to market perform from buy. The stock was up 7/16 to 23 13/16.
with a buy rating and set a price target of 61. The stock was up 7/8 to 55.
Merrill Lynch raised its intermediate rating on
to buy from accumulate and upped its second-quarter earnings estimate to 35 cents a share from 18 cents. The stock was up 1 1/4, or 10.9%, to 12 3/4.
Credit Suisse First Boston
to hold from buy. The stock was down 3 11/16, or 13.4%, to 23 15/16.
slashed its rating on
to intermediate-term accumulate from buy. EchoStar was up 1 to 62 1/2.
Warburg Dillon Read rolled out coverage of
with a buy rating. It was up 3 3/16, or 5%, to 67 1/16.
CIBC World Markets
to buy from hold. Intel was up 5 7/16, or 7.5%, to 77 5/8 after saying late yesterday that it sees limited Y2K impact on its business.
Goldman Sachs started coverage of
, adding the stock to its recommended list. The stock was up 3 3/16, or 8.2%, to 42 1/8.
Warburg Dillon Read
upped its price target on
to 39 from 33. The stock was up 2 15/16, or 9.2%, to 34 7/8.
to outperform from buy. The stock was down 4, or 6.9%, to 54.
Merrill Lynch cut its intermediate-term rating on
to accumulate from buy. Last night, Methode warned investors that it expects to post second-quarter earnings 10% to 20% below the year-ago 26 cents a share. Methode said its second-quarter results would include a 6-cent charge from the bankruptcy of a large automotive customer. The four-analyst estimate has the company pegged to make 27 cents a share in the quarter. The stock was down 2 1/8, or 12.1%, to 15 11/16.
Warburg Dillon Read raised its 2000 price target on
to 60 from 40 and reiterated a buy rating on the stock. The stock was unchanged at 59.
Warburg Dillon Read started coverage of
with a buy rating. The stock was up 10, or 9.2%, to 119 3/8.
J.P. Morgan initiated coverage of
with a buy rating. It was up 1/2 to 16 3/8.
Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette
to market perform from buy. Wachovia was down 1 to 86 3/4.
upped forest and paper products firms
to long-term buy from long-term accumulate. Merrill also upgraded
to long-term accumulate from long-term neutral. Willamette was up 2 5/8, or 6.7%, to 41 3/4; Boise Cascade was up 4 1/4, or 13.8%, to 35 1/8; and Weyerhaeuser was up 2 3/4, or 4.9%, to 58 3/8.