Last night's warning from
is not going to do any favors for the tech sector as the
Nasdaq Composite Index
continues to flirt with key support levels. Still, in a season where bellwethers such as
have already weighed in on the warnings front, jaws can only drop so many times.
Dell said its third-quarter sales were coming in about 3% below what it expected, due to weak demand in Europe. The PC maker said it remains on track to meet the 24-analyst estimate of 25 cents in the quarter but warned fourth-quarter per-share earnings could be 1 cent to 2 cents below company targets. It was trading at $26.38 on
, down from its close in composite trading at $28.19. Apple was also under pressure, lately trading at $23.13 on Instinet, down from its composite close at $25.63.
For a quick take on companies that have warned so far, see
tracking table. Also, see additional coverage from
S&P 500 futures on
lately were up 3.8 to 1454, about 4.28 points above fair value. The thinly traded
futures were down 12.5 to 3465, about 33.3 points below fair value and indicating some rough going for tech at the open.
On a more chipper note,
delivered a solid earnings report last night, saying fourth-quarter earnings were $1.16, easily beating the consensus estimate of 96 cents. It was lately trading at $48, up from $46.94.
Other chipmakers were mixed. Intel was down a notch at $41.75 from $42, on active preopen volume while
Advanced Micro Devices
was at $24.75 from $24.50.
In an encouraging sign for those long tech, bellwethers
are behaving well. Oracle was at $69, up from yesterday's close at $68.13. Cisco was lately at $58.88 from $58.56 yesterday.
was up a bit at $33 from yesterday's close of $32.50. The company said it expects to report quarterly revenue ranging from $1.65 billion to $1.7 billion. Hughes also said its DirecTV unit added 450,000 net customers to its high-power satellite TV service in the third quarter, bringing the total number of subscribers to 9 million.
Europe's major indices were higher, with France's
up 1.05%, Germany's
up 1.28% and the U.K.'s
up 0.5% (see today's
European Midday Update for more). Japan's
lost 0.3% overnight, while Hong Kong's still-rallying
rising 1.93% (see today's
Asian Markets Update for more).
For Wednesday's postclose trading, see The Night Watch.