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Like the mythological phoenix, the biblical


or the once-forgotten-now-bigger-than-ever

John Travolta

, Internet stocks rose from the dead today. Meanwhile, a huge decline in


(IBM) - Get International Business Machines Corporation Report

and the failure of other bellwether tech stocks to sustain a midday bounce weighed on major market proxies.

After overcoming a potentially debilitating start, U.S. gauges eventually succumbed to ongoing concerns about Brazil, renewed worries about a possible devaluation by China, and the continuing feeling stock prices have detached from rationality. Other global markets were whipsawed by similar factors.

The unsettling developments helped the bond market, however. The price of the 30-year Treasury bond climbed 22/32 to 102 16/32, its yield falling to 5.09%.


Dow Jones Industrial Average

closed down 143.41, or 1.6%, to 9120.67, but well off its morning low of 9088.49. IBM accounted for about half of the decline, falling 8.6% after

last night posting better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings but failing to produce revenue growth that pleased the Street.

"They admitted the execution of the hardware game plan was flawed, but IBM's tale of woe is not that bad," said Hugh Johnson, chief investment officer at

First Albany

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, which is long Big Blue. "But it comes at a time when we all have wobbly knees and we're sitting on the fence ready to take money off the table. It doesn't really matter whether it's Brazil or China or IBM or


(LU) - Get Lufax Holding Ltd American Depositary Shares two of which representing one Report

. We were overvalued, there was too much optimism and that made some seasoned portfolio managers skittish."

Johnson said he remains bullish and has not made any "significant" changes to his portfolio in recent weeks. But he is bothered by the combination of "too much optimism" and "both speculation and overvaluation in large-cap technology stocks."

The conditions have existed before but "this time we're letting some of the air out of the bubble slowly," he observed. "That's good, but I'm surprised. It's not the way these markets have been."

'The same things keep resurfacing and we keep getting the same knee-jerk reaction out of momentum players,' said D.A. Davidson's Jim Volk. 'There's a lot money running very scared in this market, but they keep bouncing back.'

American Express

(AXP) - Get American Express Company Report


J.P. Morgan

(JPM) - Get JP Morgan Chase & Co. Report

were also notable Dow losers as financial names were again rattled by emerging market concerns. Brazil's


fell another 1.8% today, following losses of more than 3% overnight in Hong Kong's

Hang Seng

and 5.4% in South Korea's

Composite Index

. Major bourses in London and Frankfurt each fell about 2.7% today.


(WMT) - Get Walmart Inc. Report

stood out on the upside amid a strong session for retailers.


Nasdaq Composite Index

opened at is low as 2303.82 as the forces behind

yesterday's conspired against the tech proxy once more. A recovery in bellwethers such as

MCI WorldCom




(CSCO) - Get Cisco Systems Inc. Report

helped the index rebound and forge as high as 2365.11 in the afternoon. But the session ended with the Comp off 5.84, or 0.2%, to 2338.88.


Nasdaq 100

gained 0.1% but the

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Semiconductor Index

dipped 1.3%, due mainly to weakness in


(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation Report


Texas Instruments

(TXN) - Get Texas Instruments Incorporated Report


A Bargain? Sure, Sort Of

Meanwhile, Internet stocks benefited from the continued adulation of investors, who perceived the creation of bargains in the recent selloff. Internet Sector

index closed up 7.37, or 1.5%, to 490.01, but down from its midday high of 504.78. Notable net gainers included


(EBAY) - Get eBay Inc. Report



, and

(AMZN) - Get Inc. Report


"It's not as though we've killed off speculation or overvaluation," Johnson added, noting the performance of Internet names, Cisco and

BMC Software


, which rose 14% after posting better-than-expected earnings. First Albany does not have positions in either Cisco or BMC.


S&P 500

closed down 9.97, or 0.8%, to 1225.19 after falling as low as 1217.97. The

Russell 2000

dipped 1.61, or 0.4%, to 422.44.

Traders and pundits alike were somewhat perplexed by the market's indecisiveness today, although most were impressed by its resiliency.

"These guys have all forgotten to take their lithium," said Jim Volk, co-head of institutional trading at

D.A. Davidson

in Portland, Ore. "One minute Brazil is no problem, the next it is. Two weeks ago China said it would not protect foreign banks, but it didn't matter. Now all of a sudden it's a problem. The same things keep resurfacing and we keep getting the same knee-jerk reaction out of momentum players. There's a lot money running very scared in this market, but they keep bouncing back."

Volk observed the ability of the Dow to hold above 9100 and the ability of the overall market to withstand the "clocking" given to IBM, Intel and other tech leaders. "You'd think the rest of the market would capitulate but I don't see a 300 to 400 point correction in the cards."

The trader observed trading had "gotten a little quiet today," particularly on the

New York Stock Exchange

. "I think everyone is a little tired after a long, grueling week," he said. "It was a four-day week that seemed like a six-day week."

In NYSE trading, 785.9 million shares were exchanged while declining stocks whipped advancers 1,815 to 1,221. In

Nasdaq Stock Market

action 1.021 billion shares traded -- the 12th straight session with more than

a billion shares exchanged -- while losers led 2,197 to 1,826. New 52-week lows bested new highs 53 to 21 on the Big Board and while new highs led 58 to 30 in over-the-counter trading.

"We're still down but at least we're not getting raped like earlier this morning," added one West Coast trader, who asked not to be identified (can't imagine why). "It was ugly this morning. The difference is, when you watch the tape it's not like they're crushing these stocks. It's not frantic selling, like


is selling their


(KO) - Get Coca-Cola Company (The) Report

position. Then this market would be really scary."

Among other indices, the

Dow Jones Transportation Average

fell 31.01, or 1%, to 3063.80; the

Dow Jones Utility Average

rose 1.74, or 0.6%, to 308.73; and the

American Stock Exchange Composite Index

slid 0.30, or 0.04%, to 704.69.

For the week, the Dow industrials fell 219.88, or 2.4%; the S&P 500 shed 18.05, or 1.5%; the Nasdaq Comp dipped 9.32 or 0.4%; the Russell 2000 slid 4.61, or 1.1%; Internet index lost 14.36, or 2.8%; the Dow transports lost 84.73, or 2.7%; the Dow utilities rose 2.19, or 0.7%; and the Amex Composite fell 4.60, or 0.6%.

Elsewhere in North American equities today, the

Toronto Stock Exchange 300

slid 41.85, or 0.6%, to 6593.91 and the

Mexican Stock Exchange IPC Index

fell 37.17, or 1%, to 3686.03. For the week, the TSE 300 lost 165.51, or 2.4%, and the IPC gained 79.26, or 2.2%.

Friday's Company Report

By Heather Moore
Staff Reporter


Earnings estimates from First Call; new highs and lows on a closing basis unless otherwise specified. Earnings reported on a diluted basis unless otherwise specified.


IBM, whose positive earnings have been pricing into the stock for weeks, sliced off 17 1/4, or 8.8%, to 179 3/4 following last night's fourth-quarter report of $2.47 a share, 2 cents higher than the 21-analyst expectation and up from the year-ago $2.11. Big Blue's CFO said in a conference call that the company made progress on picking up the pace of growth in the fourth quarter and it sees the momentum carrying into this year. He backed predictions of industry technology spending growing at an 8% to 9% rate in 1999 and said the still-struggling PC sector "sure feels a lot better than it has at any time in the past few years."


Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

dropped the stock to outperform from strong buy while upping its price target to 210 a share from 181.

Credit Suisse First Boston

increased its 1999 earnings estimate to $7.50 a share from $7.42 while upping its price target to 230 a share from 185.

Salomon Smith Barney

raised its price target to a range of 230 to 240 from 215. (

examined why a good quarter wasn't enough for IBM investors in a story this afternoon.)

Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures

Bergen Brunswig

(BBC) - Get Virtus LifeSci Biotech Clinical Trials ETF Report

lifted 11/16 to 28 5/8 after acquiring

Stadtlander Drug

, a subsidiary of Canada's


, for about $400 million, including the assumption of $91 million in debt. As part of the transaction, Bergen obtained the option to purchase Counsel's 9% stake in



, which took in 5/16 to 7 1/4.

eBay shot up 14 1/2, or 8%, to 196 3/4 after


David Faber

said the company may be entering a marketing pact with



. Compaq shed 1 1/2 to 46 3/16.


agreed to sell its satellite businesses to

Hughes Electronics


in two transactions for about $1.82 billion.

TCI Satellite Entertainment


, the publicly traded section of Primestar, tumbled 1 13/32, or 56.3%, to 1 3/32 on the deal. Hughes added 1 7/8 to 46 5/8.

Williams Communications

(WMB) - Get Williams Companies Inc. (The) Report

jumped 2, or 6.6%, to 32 1/2 after doubling the value of its contract with

Northern Telecom


to $600 million. NorTel slipped 1/2 to 53 1/2. Yesterday, Williams posted a fourth-quarter loss of 2 cents a share, missing the 14-analyst forecast for a profit of 20 and falling below the year-ago profit of 16 cents.

Earnings/revenue reports and previews

Air Products & Chemicals

(APD) - Get Air Products and Chemicals Inc. Report

dropped 3/4 to 35 7/8 after posting first-quarter earnings of 55 cents a share, a penny shy of the 12-analyst view but up from the year-ago 53 cents.

Arkansas Best


soared 2 1/2, or 43.5%, to 8 1/4 after reporting fourth-quarter earnings of 30 cents a share, excluding gains from a settlement of a dispute with



. The three-analyst outlook called for 17 cents vs. the year-ago 19 cents.

BT Alex. Brown

raised the stock to buy from market perform.



brought in 2 3/16, or 13.7%, to 18 1/4 after last night beating fourth-quarter earnings estimates by 2 cents a share. Today, BT Alex. Brown raised the stock to buy from market perform.

Becton Dickinson

(BDX) - Get Becton Dickinson and Company Report

gave up 3 1/16, or 8.3%, to 33 3/4 after Credit Suisse First Boston and

Warburg Dillon Read

separately downgraded the stock to hold from buy. Last night, the company posted first-quarter earnings of 29 cents a share, in line with expectations.

BMC Software rose 5 7/16, or 14.1%, to 43 15/16 after last night recording third-quarter earnings a nickel ahead of expectations.

Carrier Access


climbed 6 3/4, or 17.5%, to an all-time high of 45 13/16 after yesterday topping fourth-quarter earnings estimates by 6 cents a share.

C-Cube Microsystems

(CUBE) - Get CubeSmart Report

slid 7 1/8, or 24.1%, to 22 5/8 after last night posting fourth-quarter earnings of 31 cents a share, on target with estimates.

Delta Woodside


stumbled 1 7/8, or 27.3%, to 5 after missing second-quarter earnings estimates by 16 cents a share yesterday.

Dime Bancorp


lost 1 3/8, or 5.8%, to 24 15/16 after yesterday reporting fourth-quarter earnings of 51 cents a share, in line with estimates.

Dominion Resources

(D) - Get Dominion Energy Inc. Report

lifted 9/16 to 45 1/16 after reporting fourth-quarter earnings of 28 cents, beating the 14-analyst view by a penny but falling below the year-earlier 47 cents.

Fortune Brands


skidded 5/8 to 32 after recording fourth-quarter earnings of 55 cents a share, in line with the eight-analyst view and up from the year-ago 51 cents.


lowered 3 1/16, or 23.6%, to 10 after last night forecasting that its fourth-quarter results will not meet expectations. The five-analyst estimate called for earnings of 6 cents a share from the developer of broadband video networking equipment.



fell 7/8, or 9.7%, to 8 1/8 after last night warning it sees first-quarter results coming in at break-even and that two members of its senior management team quit. The company said it's realigning its operations to focus on business functions instead of three decentralized product business units. Analysts called for 4 cents in the first quarter vs. the year-earlier 7 cents. The company also posted fourth-quarter earnings of 7 cents a share, 2 cents ahead of the six-analyst forecast but below the year-ago 13 cents.

Just for Feet


slipped 3 7/8, or 21.8%, to 14 after last night predicting its fourth-quarter earnings will be lower than the seven-analyst estimate for profits of 25 cents a share.

Lattice Semiconductor

(LSCC) - Get Lattice Semiconductor Corporation Report

hopped 2 3/16 to 50 1/16 after last night topping third-quarter earnings estimates by 2 cents a share.



tumbled 2 3/8, or 12.1%, to 17 5/16 even after last night reporting fourth-quarter earnings of 31 cents a share, above the outlook for 12 cents but below the year-ago 52 cents.



decreased 1 13/16, or 8.5%, to 19 3/4 after last night missing third-quarter earnings estimates by 3 cents a share.



was trimmed 11 1/2, or 7.6%, to 139 1/2 even after beating third-quarter earnings estimates by 7 cents a share yesterday.

Quaker Fabric


lost 1 7/16, or 24.7%, to 4 7/16 after last night warning that it expects its fourth-quarter results to come in near the third quarter's 4 cents a share, citing lower-than-expected incoming orders. The three-analyst estimate called for 16 cents vs. the year-earlier 21 cents.

Sunrise Medical


sloughed off 2 3/16, or 22%, to 7 3/4 after last night posting second-quarter earnings of 8 cents a share, falling below forecasts for 17 cents.



shot up 1 3/4, or 20.1%, to 10 5/16 after last night beating fourth-quarter earnings estimates by 5 cents a share.



sliced off 2 3/16 to 63 3/16 after posting fourth-quarter earnings of 72 cents a share, beating the 17-analyst view of 70 cents and moving ahead of the year-earlier 62 cents.

In other earnings news:

Offerings and stock actions

Software firm



brought in 23 1/2, or 117.5%, to 43 3/4 in its trading debut today. The 2.5 million-share IPO was priced at 20 this morning by Credit Suisse First Boston.

Elsewhere among new offerings,

Covad Communications


soared 27 3/8, or 152%, to 45 3/8 in the high-speed digital communication services company's IPO.

Bear Stearns

priced the 7.8 million-share offering top-range at 18 a share this morning.

Still elsewhere,


(NVDA) - Get NVIDIA Corporation Report

surged 7 5/8, or 63.5%, to 19 11/16 in its 3.5 million-share IPO. The offering of shares in the 3D graphics company priced at 12 a share last night by underwriter Morgan Stanley Dean Witter.

International Microcomputer Software


grew 1, or 8.4%, to 12 15/16 on market chatter the company is thinking of spinning off its e-commerce operation,

, and taking it public.

Analyst actions



vaulted 3, or 8.7%, to 37 7/8 after BT Alex. Brown started coverage with a strong buy.



added 2 to 87 7/8 after Bear Stearns upgraded the stock to buy from neutral and the company's CEO made an appearance on


. Meanwhile,


(T) - Get AT&T Inc. Report

rose 3/16 to 88 1/4 on word it's considering selling its Internet-access business to


(ATHM) - Get Autohome Inc. American Depositary Shares each representing four class A. Report

in exchange for $1 billion in @Home stock. The deal ultimately would keep AT&T in control of its Net assets, because AT&T is acquiring



, @Home's controlling shareholder. @Home, which jumped 3 13/16 to 101, plans to buy Excite for $6.7 billion.

Jones New York


expanded 4 1/2, or 18.8%, to 28 1/2 after Morgan Stanley Dean Witter upgraded the stock to strong buy from outperform and Credit Suisse First Boston initiated coverage with a strong buy.

Pixar Animation Studios


declined 1 7/8 to 38 after

Prudential Securities

upped it to accumulate from hold.


(BID) - Get Sotheby's Report

took in 2 3/16 to 38 11/16 after Morgan Stanley Dean Witter raised it to outperform from neutral.



(MRK) - Get Merck & Company Inc. Report

slid 7 5/16, or 5%, to 139 after saying shortly before the closing bell that it will not begin Phase III studies of its MK-869 to treat depression. The stock was at 144 1/4 at 4 p.m. but skidded in late composite trading. The drug giant said recently completed Phase II dose-finding studies for MK-869 suggested antidepressant activity for at least one of the tested doses but that they were not definitive due to a high placebo response rate.