Stocks were slightly higher overall, while the

Dow Jones Transportation Average

was soaring, led by

UAL

(UAL) - Get Report

.

UAL, parent of

United Airlines

, said this morning it expects first-quarter earnings and full-year earnings to surpass Wall Street estimates. The news sent its stock soaring, up 4 9/16, or 7%, to 71 5/8.

UAL expects first-quarter earnings to come in around $1.35 a share, far above the

First Call

10-analyst estimate of $1.12. For the full year of 1999, UAL expects to earn between $10 to $12 a share, well above the current 11-analyst consensus of $9.12 a share.

The Dow transportation average was up 2%.

Elsewhere, the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was up 35 to 9912. The

S&P 500

up 7 to 1302. The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was up 30 to 2412. The small-cap

Russell 2000

up 2 to 400.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

index was up 23 to 591.

TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index

was up 3 to 109.

John Roque, senior analyst at

Arnhold & S. Bleichroeder

, said that over the short term he expects the market to consolidate here, adding that the 9700 level on the Dow is the lower level of consolidation.

In a note this morning, Roque pointed out that several floors of support for the market indicate downside is limited. Among some of the floors that are being created: continued improvement in Japan, the extremely positive response in German equities on the news of the resignation of

Oskar Lafontaine

, the German finance minister, and better action in T-bonds and in the

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Utility Average

.

Roque said the best areas in the market here are drug stocks, gaming, and the food retailers.

Meanwhile, Roque is shunning technology right now. Roque wrote: "It's much too soon to talk about the group being at a bottom given the way

Oracle

(ORCL) - Get Report

responded to the bad news. When the sector starts absorbing bad news then we can talk about the group being at a bottom."

Oracle tumbled sharply in trading on Friday on disappointment with revenue growth.

The 30-year Treasury bond was down 1/32 to 95 29/32, yielding 5.54%.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, advancers were beating decliners 1,342 to 1,169 on 211 million shares. On the

Nasdaq Stock Market

, winners were beating losers 1,625 to 1,513 on 262 million shares.

On the NYSE, 36 issues had set new 52-week highs while 35 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 47 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 39.

On the Big Board,

Rite Aid

(RAD) - Get Report

was most active, with 9 million shares changing hands. It was up 1 13/16 to 24 3/8.

On the Nasdaq, Oracle was most active with 14 million shares changing hands. It was up 1 5/16 to 29 15/16.

9:55 a.m.: Stocks Open Little Changed Amid Merger News

Stocks opened little changed amid merger news, including a $16 billion banking deal.

The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

was down 4 to 9872. The

S&P 500

was down 1 to 1294.

The

Nasdaq Composite Index

was up 4 to 2386. The

Russell 2000

was up 1 to 399.

TheStreet.com Internet Sector

was up 8 to 576.

TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index

was up 1 to 106.

The 30-year Treasury bond was up 2/32 to 95 31/32, yielding 5.53x%.

On the merger-and-acquisition front,

Fleet

(FLT) - Get Report

agreed to buy

BankBoston

(BKB)

for $16 billion in stock.

Meanwhile,

DuPont

(DD) - Get Report

, which owns 20% of

Pioneer Hi-Bred

(PHB) - Get Report

, is buying the rest of the company for $40 a share in cash and stock. Pioneer closed Friday at 34 5/16. The deal is valued at $7.7 billion.

Most Up at Open -- NYSE

EMC (EMC) , up 2 1/2 to 114 3/4

.

Most Up at Open -- Nasdaq

CMGI (CMGI) , up 13 to 177

: CMGI will become a component of the

Nasdaq 100

effective at the close of trading Wednesday. CMGI will replace

Netscape Communications

(NSCP)

, which is being acquired by

America Online

(AOL)

.

Most Down at Open -- NYSE

Limited (LTD) , down 1 5/16 to 36 1/4

.

Most Down at Open -- Nasdaq

Chancellor Media (AMFM) , down 2 3/8 to 42

: The company said it was scuttling its proposed acquisition of

LIN Television

and announced big management changes and announced plans for a new Internet division.