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Stocks Close Out Triple-Witching Friday on the Upside

Market internals were positive, while volume was heavy.

Stocks ended this triple-witching Friday higher, as the market's major averages added on to the already hefty gains they've enjoyed in a week stuffed with news.

Market breadth on both the

New York Stock Exchange

and

Nasdaq Stock Market

was positive. Volume was heavy overall.

On the NYSE, advancers beat decliners 1,533 to 1,377 on 906 million shares. On the Nasdaq, winners beat losers 2,111 to 1,655 on 968.2 million shares.

On the NYSE, 82 issues set new 52-week highs while 31 touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 95 issues set new highs while new lows totaled 30.

On the Big Board,

Gillette

(G) - Get Genpact Limited Report

was most active, with 30.2 million shares changing hands. It was down 5 3/16, or 11%, to 42 1/8, in the wake of its profit warning

yesterday.

On the Nasdaq,

Intel

(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation (INTC) Report

was most active, with 39.1 million shares changing hands. It was down 3 1/16, or 5.3%, to 54 15/16, after

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

downgraded it outperform from strong buy.

Market data above are preliminary. Updated numbers and analysis will follow in the Market Roundup

3:01 p.m.: Stocks Up Slightly as Volume Remains Heavy

After a strenuous, anxiety-filled and at times joyous week, major market averages were slightly higher going into the final hour of trading on this triple-witching Friday.

And what a week it was: The much-anticipated release of the May

Consumer Price Index

, the

Nasdaq Composite Index's

largest point increase ever on Wednesday, the 30-year Treasury bond's explosion to the upside yesterday and

Federal Reserve

Chairman

Alan Greenspan's

testimony yesterday, and today, a triple-witching Friday. Whew!

So as traders close the books on this week, advancers were beating decliners on both the

New York Stock Exchange

and

Nasdaq Stock Market

,

Frank Gretz, market analyst at

Shields

, said the big tech stocks, for example, which provided some of the market's leadership in March, have been "acting well enough" lately but are not out of their recent consolidations.

April's leaders, the cyclicals, "still look good to me," noted Gretz. He said that ironically those two groups could come together -- a prospect he thinks is likely -- and you could get a good run, in the averages at least.

"I'm pretty optimistic," he said.

As for the triple-witching, Gretz said it's "hard to make sense out of expiration day."

On the NYSE, advancers were beating decliners 1,485 to 1,387 on 709 million shares. On the Nasdaq, winners were beating losers 2,045 to 1,617 on 765 million shares.

On the NYSE, 72 issues had set new 52-week highs while 29 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 82 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 24.

On the NYSE,

Gillette

(G) - Get Genpact Limited Report

, which came out with an earnings warning yesterday after the close, was most active with 27 million shares changing hands. It was down 5 5/16, or 11%, to 42.

On the Nasdaq,

Intel

(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation (INTC) Report

was most active, with 33 million shares changing hands. It was down 2 5/8, or 5%, to 55 5/16, in the wake of a downgrade by

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

, which cut the chip giant to outperform from strong buy.

2:00 p.m.: Stocks Narrowly Mixed in Heavy Volume

Major market barometers were narrowly mixed this afternoon, on this triple-witching Friday.

Gillette

(G) - Get Genpact Limited Report

and

Intel

(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation (INTC) Report

were prominent in the news, though shareholders wished they weren't.

Gillette issued an earnings warning yesterday after the close and was down 5 1/4, or 11%, to 42 1/16. In addition, several Wall Street analysts downgraded the stock today. Gillette was also most active on the

New York Stock Exchange

with 24 million shares changing hands.

As for Intel, it was getting beaten up after being downgraded by

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

to outperform from strong buy. It was down 3 1/8 to 54 13/16 and was most active on the

Nasdaq Stock Market

with 29 million shares changing hands.

Caterpillar

(CAT) - Get Caterpillar Inc. Report

was providing the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

with its biggest boost and was up 2 to 60 7/8.

Lehman Brothers

initiated coverage on Caterpillar with a buy rating.

Meanwhile, a couple of farm equipment makers were making solid advances.

Deere

(DE) - Get Deere & Company Report

was up 2 9/16, or 7%, to 41 1/8;

New Holland

(NH) - Get NantHealth, Inc. Report

was up 5/16 to 15 3/8; and

Agco

(AG) - Get First Majestic Silver Corp. Report

was up 1, or 9%, to 11 5/8 after "I work for"

J.P. Morgan

upgraded the stocks to buy from market performer.

Volume was robust on both the NYSE and the Nasdaq. On the NYSE, advancers were beating decliners 1,439 to 1,382 on 629 million shares. On the Nasdaq, winners were beating losers 1,971 to 1,608 on 670 million shares.

On the NYSE, 65 issues had set new 52-week highs while 27 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 73 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 23.

Focus: Today's Trading Debuts

Mail.com

(MAIL:Nasdaq) was up 1 11/16, or 24%, to 8 11/16.

Salomon Smith Barney

priced the company's 6.85 million-share IPO at $7. Mail.com is a provider of e-mail and advanced messaging services to high-traffic Web sites, ISPs, corporations and direct to consumers.

Viant

(VIAN:Nasdaq) was up 7 3/4, or 48%, to 23 3/4.

Goldman Sachs

priced Viant's 3 million-share IPO top-range at $16. The price range for the Internet services company's offering was raised to $14 to $16 from $10 to $12.

GoTo.com

(GOTO)

was up 9 13/16, or 65%, to 24 13/16.

Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette

priced the 6 million-share IPO at $15 a share.

1:05 p.m.: Midday Musings: Indices Hold Steady as Triple-Witch Session Wears On

11:52 a.m.: Stocks Mixed as Volume Remains Heavy

Heading into the lunch hour on Wall Street, major market gauges were mixed, while Internet, airline, and forest and paper product stocks were turning in solid performances.

Gillette

(G) - Get Genpact Limited Report

and

Intel

(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation (INTC) Report

were the two worst-performing components of the

S&P 500

TheStreet Recommends

.

Gillette issued an earnings warning last night after the close and was down 4 15/16, or 10%, to 42 3/8. Several Wall Street analysts downgraded the stock today. It was most active on the

New York Stock Exchange

with 18 million shares changing hands. Intel was taking a hit after being downgraded by

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

.

priceline.com

(PCLN)

was the leading star in the Net sector this morning, up 5 9/16, or 6%, to 94 5/16.

Forest and paper products stocks were rebounding after getting beaten up for the past two sessions. The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Forest & Paper Products Index

was up 3%.

Airline stocks gained thanks in part to upgrades of several airlines in the sector by

Goldman Sachs

. The

American Stock Exchange Airline Index

was up 1%.

Volume was heavy on both the NYSE and the

Nasdaq Stock Market

. On the NYSE, advancers were beating decliners 1,388 to 1,332 on 469 million shares. On the Nasdaq, winners were beating losers 1,780 to 1,448 on 464 million shares.

On the NYSE, 52 issues had set new 52-week highs while 19 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 62 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 15.

Tech Focus

Chip giant Intel was off 3 1/16, or 5%, to 54 7/8, after Morgan Stanley downgraded it to outperform from strong buy. The Morgan Stanley move comes a day after

Credit Suisse First Boston

cut its earnings estimates on Intel for fiscal 1999 and 2000.

Intel was most active on the Nasdaq, with 22 million shares changing hands.

The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Semiconductor Index

was down 1%.

Morgan Stanley raised its price target on

Dow Jones Industrial Average

component

IBM

(IBM) - Get International Business Machines (IBM) Report

to $135 from $115 and raised its earnings estimate for 1999 to $3.96 a share from $3.85. IBM was unchanged at 120 3/16.

Iomega

(IOM)

is going to take a restructuring charge in the second quarter of 11 cents a share. Excluding the charge, the company forecast a loss in the second quarter in the range of 5 to 10 cents a share. The First Call four-analyst outlook called for breakeven results. Its stock was down 9/16, or 13%, to 3 13/16.

Adobe Systems

(ADBE) - Get Adobe Inc. Report

was flying after it reported yesterday after the close second-quarter earnings of 70 cents a share, beating the 11-analyst projection by a nickel and moving ahead of the year-ago 41 cents. It was up 5 1/4, or 7%, to 79 1/8.

The

Philadelphia Stock Exchange Computer Box Maker Index

, the

Nasdaq 100

and the

Morgan Stanley High-Tech 35

were down fractionally.

10:58 a.m.: Stocks Mostly Lower in Heavy Trading

Intel

(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation (INTC) Report

and

Gillette

(G) - Get Genpact Limited Report

were ensuring that the

S&P 500

stayed in the red this morning while major market averages were mostly lower in heavy volume on this triple-witching Friday.

On the

New York Stock Exchange

, decliners were beating advancers 1,326 to 1,312 on 384 million shares. On the

Nasdaq Stock Market

, winners were beating losers 1,663 to 1,378 on 341 million shares.

As for Intel, in addition to be being a bummer on the S&P 500, it was also helping keep the

Nasdaq Composite Index

and

Nasdaq 100

underwater. The chip giant was down 3 1/16, or 5%, to 54 7/8, after

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

downgraded it to outperform from strong buy. The Morgan Stanley move comes a day after

Credit Suisse First Boston

cut its earnings estimates on Intel for fiscal 1999 and 2000.

Gillette said yesterday it expects to report about a 20% decrease in second-quarter earnings compared with a year ago. The stock was downgraded by several Wall Street analysts this morning. It was off 4 7/8, or 10%, to 42 7/16.

Elsewhere,

Iomega

(IOM)

said it's going to take a restructuring charge in the second quarter of 11 cents a share. Excluding the charge, the company forecast a loss in the second quarter in the range of 5 to 10 cents a share. The

First Call

four-analyst outlook called for breakeven results.

Philip Roth, chief technical analyst at Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, said that in light of the decline in the market from June 7 to 11, when it tested the lows of late May, and with the subsequent rebound, the market is now in a rebuilding pattern and is poised for a summer rally with "modest upside potential."

As for today's triple-witching, "you have to distrust what goes on" as far as the movements in the market today, Roth noted.

On the NYSE, 42 issues had set new 52-week highs while 15 had touched new lows. On the Nasdaq, 51 issues had set new highs while new lows totaled 12.

On the Big Board, Gillette was most active, with 15 million shares changing hands.

On the Nasdaq, Intel was most active, with 18 million shares changing hands.

9;58 a.m.: Stocks Mostly Higher at Open

Major market gauges were mostly higher early on this triple-witching Friday as

Intel

(INTC) - Get Intel Corporation (INTC) Report

was a drag on the

Nasdaq Composite Index

and the

S&P 500

.

Intel was off 3 1/8 to 54 13/16 after

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter

downgraded it to outperform from strong buy.

Triple-witching refers to the quarterly expiration of stock and index options and index futures.

The 30-year Treasury bond, which exploded higher

yesterday, was slightly lower.

Most Up at Open -- NYSE

Aegon (AEG) - Get AEGON N.V. ADR Report, up 2 to 77 15/16

.

Most Up at Open -- Nasdaq

Durakon Industries (DRKN) , up 3 7/16 to 15 1/2

: The company agreed to a $16-a-share buyout by a partnership formed by

Littlejohn

, a private investment fund based in Connecticut.

Most Down at Open -- NYSE

Gillette (G) - Get Genpact Limited Report, down 5 5/16 to 42 5/8

: Gillette said it expects to report about a 20% decrease in second-quarter earnings compared with a year ago. The

First Call

14-analyst estimate called for quarterly earnings of 29 cents a share vs. the year-ago 33 cents.

Most Down at Open -- Nasdaq

The Wet Seal (WTSLA) , down 4 3/8 to 22

: The company said it expects to post flat second-quarter earnings because of lackluster sales. The First Call four-analyst outlook called for earnings of 44 cents a share.