Happy, happy. Joy, joy.
Catching some traders and pundits off balance, the
Dow Jones Industrial Average
rambled upstream to notch its first-ever close above 10,000 as investors were excited by a raft of mergers.
The Dow rose as high as 10,040.36 before closing up 184.54, or 1.9%, to 10,006.78, eclipsing its previous high of 9997.62 set
The Dow's close above 10,000 comes 11 months and 23 days after it first closed above 9,000, on
April 6, 1998. From its inception May 26, 1896, it took the DJIA 76 years and nearly seven months before it first closed above 1000, on Nov. 14, 1972. The index didn't close above 2000 until Jan. 8, 1987, and the first close above 3000 came April 17, 1991. Since then, millennial milestones have fallen more quickly (which makes sense because they represent less of a percentage move as the index has risen).
The Dow closed above both 4000 and 5000 for the first time in 1995. After passing 6000 on Oct. 14, 1996, the index took just four months to close above 7000 on
Feb. 13, 1997, still its fastest millennial ascent in history. About five months later, on
July 16, 1997, 8000 was eclipsed and then 9000 fell last April, setting the Dow up for its run to five figures.
But at today's close, not everyone was as excited as a
"I can't be right all the time," said Sam Ginzburg, managing director of equity trading at
, who admitting shorting
S&P 500 Spiders
as the Dow approached 10,000, just as he had done when it first approached the level earlier this month. "I ended up losing a little but I mitigated a decent-sized loss into a minor one. It was more of a fun thing to do" than a big bet.
While chagrined, Ginzburg tipped his hat to the market's performance.
"We had good tape action today and we'll probably rally into tomorrow," he said. "But Dow 10,000 is going to be all over the news and I'd be more comfortable shorting into the long weekend."
The stock market is closed Friday in observance of Good Friday.
'The valuation parameters at this point in time make lots of people scratch their heads, and I'm one,' Prime Charter's Scott Bleier said. But 'since the bottom line is we're here to make money, you must go with what works. That means putting a lot of discipline aside.'
The market was able to overlook the bond market's woes, troubling developments in Kosovo and the
Federal Open Market Committee's
meeting tomorrow, but the trader wondered how much further the rally can go.
"Everybody wanted to do this. Kudos," he said. "Now what? If you're not an unbelievable story, followed by technicals, followed by options activity, you'd better know what you're doing. The market is not going to be the bailout."
The price of the 30-year Treasury bond fell 21/32 to 94 11/32, its yield rising to 5.65%.
Dow 10K Just One Story in the Naked City
Dow 10,000 dominated the headlines, but other gauges rumbled higher as well.
surged 27.19, or 2.1%, to 1309.99 but failed to surpass its all-time best of 1316.55. The
Nasdaq Composite Index
gained 73.67, or 3%, to 2492.84, its fifth-biggest point gain in history and its highest close since Feb. 3. Even the
climbed 5.84, or 1.5%, to 399.76.
Internet favorites also rose.
TheStreet.com Internet Sector
index rose 24.58, or 3.9%, to an all-time high of 654.16 and
TheStreet.com E-Commerce Index
gained 1.17, or 1.1%, to 112.70.
New York Stock Exchange
trading, a modest 749.7 million shares were exchanged while gainers led 1,828 to 1,127. In
Nasdaq Stock Market
activity 879.3 million shares were exchanged while gainers led 2,174 to 1,765. Still, new 52-week lows bested new highs 81 to 44 on the Big Board and by 80 to 70 in over-the-counter trading.
Equities were enlivened by several merger developments, notably confirmation that
are engaging in prenuptial discussions. That, plus a
Morgan Stanley Dean Witter
had the once-dormant energy stocks soaring. The
American Stock Exchange Oil & Gas Index
gained 4% and the
Philadelphia Stock Exchange Oil Service Index
Elsewhere on the merger front,
said it will acquire
is said to be close to buying
King World Productions
have reportedly engaged in preliminary talks.
Other developments abetting the rally included
stock split; a
Food and Drug Administration
can still market Rezulin; and the absence of a profit warning by
, whose management met with analysts this morning.
That's a lot of good news, much of it focused on the technology and drug sectors. As a result, the
Morgan Stanley High-Tech 35
rose 4.2% and the
gained 3.7% while the
American Stock Exchange Pharmaceutical Index
Dress You Up in My Love
In addition to the aforementioned, equities were buoyed by so-called window-dressing by fund managers, or the perception thereof.
"Seemingly, the last nine out of 10 quarters has been a mad rush to plow into the best performing names," said Scott Bleier, chief investment strategist at
. "It's exacerbated by need for money managers to show they own these big winners in their portfolios. It's the end of the quarter and you've got to show you own something."
Bleier, who predicted back on
Dec. 14 that the Dow would hit 10,000 "sometime" in the first quarter, noted big-cap tech stocks fueled the Dow's latest flurry.
"While many disputed their leadership, they never relinquished leadership," he said. "When they paused, the whole market paused. The only caveat is
In addition to the "Lucky Seven" tech giants -- Dell, Microsoft,
-- Bleier remarked on the performance of lesser-known Net and related names, such as
, which rose 31% on "no news."
"The valuation parameters at this point in time make lots of people scratch their heads, and I'm one," the strategist conceded. But "since the bottom line is we're here to make money, you must go with what works. That means putting a lot of discipline aside."
Although not the main story, Internet stocks were a "big fat story" today, he said. "If Internet stocks were to crash and burn tomorrow, I don't think flow of funds would be as hot and heavy."
Prefacing the comment by saying he trades Internet stocks and so is not guilty of "sour grapes," and acknowledging "anybody who badmouths Internet stocks is a major idiot," Bleier said: "There is no reality with these stocks. Frankly, I am becoming more and more convinced this is the greatest speculative mania of all time."
Among other indices, the
Dow Jones Transportation Average
rose 34.26, or 1.1%, to 3294.37; the
Dow Jones Utility Average
rose 0.54, or 0.2%, to 300.31; and the
American Stock Exchange Composite Index
slid 0.86, or 0.1%, to 717.88.
Elsewhere in North American equities, the
Toronto Stock Exchange 300
rose 17.57 to 6652.77 and the
Mexican Stock Exchange IPC Index
jumped 108.85, or 2.3%, to 4845.43.
Monday's Company Report
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.
As noted above, Atlantic Richfield excelled 8 11/16, or 13.3%, to 74 1/16 after confirming it's in merger talks with BP Amoco. BP Amoco, the third-largest oil company in the world, is expected to buy Arco in a stock deal valued around $25 billion. BP Amoco lifted 4 9/16 to an all-time high of 105.
first caught wind of a potential deal
Elsewhere in oil, Halliburton surged 3 1/16, or 8%, to 41 3/16 and Baker Hughes surged 1 1/2, or 6.3%, to 25 5/16 after Morgan Stanley Dean Witter upgraded the stocks to strong buy from outperform.
In other merger news, Platinum Technology rocketed up 14 3/16, or 144.5%, to 24 1/16 after Computer Associates agreed to buy its rival for $3.5 billion in one of the biggest deals to hit the software industry. Computer Associates flew 3 1/16, or 9%, to 37.
As mentioned above, Mister Softee charged up 3 1/4 to an all-time high of 92 3/8 after Friday's stock split and ahead of this week's talks with the
Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures
Audio Book Club
sliced off 7/8, or 7.1%, to 11 3/8 after agreeing to acquire
, a unit of
. Financial terms of the agreement weren't disclosed.
Corporate Renaissance Group
jumped up 1, or 15.7%, to 7 1/2 after saying late Friday it received a proposal from a management-led group to acquire all the company's outstanding shares for $8 a share.
rose 4 3/16 to 112 on word its
unit is in talks to buy up to 90% of Indonesia's
Glaxo Wellcome picked up 2 7/16 to 64 1/4 after the
said the company is looking for merger partners after preliminary discussions with Bristol-Myers Squibb were called off. Bristol-Myers reeled in 2 11/16 to 62 3/16.
said it will buy a 22% stake in
, an online investment banker and broker. Both companies are set to go public in the coming months.
climbed 2 3/8, or 11.7%, to 22 3/4 after agreeing to sell a majority of the company to privately held
while keeping 12.9% of its shares publicly held. The company is unrelated to
Juno Online Services
(JWEB:Nasdaq), which is planning an IPO.
flourished 7 7/8, or 7.7%, to 109 15/16 after agreeing to supply $1 billion in equipment and services to former parent
under a four-year pact. AT&T slid 1 to 81 11/16. Also, Lucent will replace
Standard & Poor's
Among other changes to S&P indices announced last week,
Kansas City Southern
S&P MidCap 400
component, rallied 2 11/16, or 5%, to 56 3/8 on news it will replace AMP in the S&P 500 after the closing bell April 1. AMP is being acquired by S&P 500 component
S&P SmallCap 600
component, rose 1 3/8, or 5.3%, to 27 3/8 on news it will replace Kansas City Southern in the midcap index.
Silicon Valley Group
rose 1 3/16, or 11.4%, to 11 5/8 on news it will replace Mohawk Industries in the small-cap index. And
, a component of the small-cap index, rose 1 1/2 to 61 1/16 on news it will replace
in the midcap index.
shot up 2 5/32, or 71.9%, to an annual high of 5 1/4 after saying its management and board members will buy an $8.75 million stake in the company. Mace also announced that a new board will be put in place and that Louis Paolino will become chairman and CEO.
slipped 1/32 to 7 9/16 after
bought a 37% stake in the company for $5.4 billion. Renault also took a 23% stake in
Nissan Diesel Motor
, Nissan's truck-making affiliate.
tacked on 3 3/8 to 74 13/16 after saying that business customers of
will be able to make toll-free phone calls on the Internet using Qwest technology. Banyan climbed 1 1/2, or 12.9%, to 13 1/4.
Earnings/revenue reports and previews
leapt 3/4, or 12.2%, to 6 15/16 after recording a fourth-quarter loss of 22 cents a share, 1 cent wider than the three-analyst view and behind the year-ago profit of 30 cents.
rose 3/8 to 65 5/8 after forecasting first-quarter earnings of 73 cents to 80 cents a share, below the 11-analyst estimate of 82 cents. But the company also projected second-quarter earnings of $1.50 to $1.59 a share, above the 10-analyst estimate of $1.45.
lowered 1/4 to 25 11/16 after reporting fourth-quarter earnings of 28 cents a share, 3 cents below the 13-analyst outlook and behind the year-ago 44 cents.
tumbled 1/2 to 29 3/8 after posting second-quarter earnings of 20 cents a share, in line with the 15-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 17 cents.
skidded 5 1/8, or 11.2%, to 40 3/4 after Morgan Stanley Dean Witter slashed it to outperform from strong buy.
revved up 5 7/8, or 8.6%, to an all-time high of 74 11/16 after
upped its price target to 82 from 65 a share.
shaved off 3/8 to 71 1/8 and
shaved off 5/16 to 59 1/16 after Morgan Stanley Dean Witter upgraded the companies to strong buy from outperform.
popped up 3 1/16, or 7.9%, to 41 7/8 after Morgan Stanley Dean Witter lifted it to strong buy from outperform.
vaulted 3 1/8, or 8.4%, to 40 3/8 after
upgraded it to strong buy from accumulate.
declined 7 1/8, or 17.3%, to 34 1/8 after
dropped it to neutral from attractive.
expanded 3 7/16 to 114 15/16 after
Credit Suisse First Boston
raised it to buy from hold and increased its 2000 earnings estimate for the company to $3.50 from $3.35 a share.
Amazon.com advanced 10 5/8, or 7.6%, to 149 5/8 after announcing plans to launch an online auction service. Rumors that the book and music retailer would enter the auction biz first hit the Street
Friday. Separately, Amazon agreed to buy 50% of closely held
Auctioneer eBay lowered 6 3/4 to 147 25/32 on the Amazon news despite word it and
Warner Bros. Online
, a unit of
, set a three-year strategic alliance. Time Warner rose 1 9/16 to 70 3/8.
tumbled 5 3/4, or 7.7%, to 69; and Onsale tumbled 1 3/16 to 34 1/16.
dwindled 1/16 to 34 3/4 after saying it made changes in its software programs in an effort to cut costs and end losses at its commercial airplane division.
soared 7 9/16, or 36.7%, to an all-time high of 28 1/4 after the company changed its name to
and launched a new Web site. Also, the company will trade under the symbol FATB starting Tuesday.
doubled, rising 1 1/8 to 3 3/8, after receiving approval from the FDA to manufacture and market
, a generic version of the antibiotic Minocin.
Iridium World Communications
dropped 1 9/16, or 7.3%, to 19 15/16 after saying it received a two-month waiver on its credit agreement. The company also said CFO and Vice President Roy T. Grant plans to resign April 16 for personal reasons.
exploded up 25 3/4, or 32.7%, to a postoffering high of 104 5/8 after David Alger of
Fred Alger Management
named it as one of his top picks in this week's