John J. Edwards III
Forget that pale paste of hydrogenated oils -- America's cooking with
The leading networker is continuing to lead the tech sector higher ahead of its earnings release, set for tomorrow after the close. Cisco was up 2 1/4 to 59 1/2 around midday, having climbed steadily since its April 25 close of 46 3/8.
SoundView Financial Group
this morning upgraded Cisco to short-term buy from hold, maintaining a long-term buy, and set a short-term price target of 70.
Other networkers are basking in Cisco's reflected glory, with
all sharply higher. And this all comes amid a general tech and small-cap rally that shows no signs of flagging -- the tech-driven
Nasdaq Composite Index
is up more than 1.5% today after enjoying its largest point gain ever Friday, and the
has tacked on 1.7%.
"People are scrambling to buy tech," one trader said, proceeding to mix a metaphor in the heat of the moment: "People feel as though Cisco's out of the woods, so it's safe to go back in the water."
Large-caps are extending last week's rally as well. The
Dow Jones Industrial Average
has been challenging its March 11 record, spending the morning knocking around under and over the 7100 mark. But not every big company is joining the upward parade.
is suffering from a wave of negative media, dragging the rest of the tobacco group down with it. Big Mo was under the withering spotlight of
"60 Minutes" last night, and a
article published this weekend focuses on how juries -- those pesky avatars of democracy -- might derail the vaunted $300 billion tobacco settlement.
Meanwhile, in the tech world,
continues to slide from its April 30 high of 121 1/2. It recently traded around 118, no doubt bringing a smile to the
execs pursuing an odd vendetta against MSFT's
links to TKTM's Web site.
And then there's the financial world's one-word punchline:
. No, they won't be open for a while. That big buying opportunity will just have to wait.