John J. Edwards III
magic wand sputtered a little but had some sparkly dust left for the markets, as the major indices extended yesterday's upward blast.
chairman today wrapped up his
without incident, allowing the markets to find their own way. That way was higher, but the
Dow Jones Industrial Average
appeared to encounter what the technical analysts call key resistance at 8100. It rose 26.71 to 8088.36.
gained 2.58 to 936.56 -- just 0.03 short of its July 16 record -- and the tech-driven
Nasdaq Composite Index
moved up 3.79 to 1567.65. The bond market, which provided much of yesterday's forward momentum, was a nonfactor for equities today. The yield on the bellwether 30-year Treasury bond headed up to 6.43%. (For more on bonds, see today's
Stock-market volume picked up and breadth remained positive, though not as wildly so as yesterday.
New York Stock Exchange
advancers bested decliners by 1,718 to 1,144 on volume of 620.9 million shares. On the Nasdaq, 2,229 advancers led 2,110 decliners on 694.8 million shares.
"One cannot help but express awe and amazement at the market's performance," said Alan Ackerman, market strategist at
. "We're looking at a sprinter that's running a mile at a sprinter's pace. Sooner or later there's going to be a sense of exhaustion."
To deal with that poop-out before it comes, Ackerman said he's looking for stocks with price-to-earnings ratios below the general market's level of about 20. "I find the combination of safety and growth in stocks like
, which is broadening its telecommunications operations into growth areas such as Latin and South America," Ackerman said. BellSouth was off 5/8 to 47 5/16 today and has a P/E of 18.
Wednesday's market action
(earnings estimates from
jetted higher after the
reversed course and endorsed their pending merger. McBoeing had to make certain concessions, including a 10-year moratorium on new exclusive supply contracts. Boeing gained 2 11/16 to 59 1/16 and McDonnell Douglas gained 4 11/16 to 76 7/16.
blasted up 2 1/2 to a 52-week high of 31 9/16 on the strength of its fourth-quarter results, reported late
yesterday. The company beat expectations by 3 cents.
upgraded Bay to trading buy from market perform and
upgraded it to outperform from neutral, placing a 12-month price target of 40 on the stock. Bay's outperformance led the networking sector higher, with
up 1 9/16 to an all-time high of 80 3/8,
up 1 7/16 to 57 13/16 and
up 5/16 to 51 1/16.
, however, dimmed 1 1/8 to 51 3/8
dropped 4 7/8 to 39 5/8 after
Hambrecht & Quist
lowered its earnings estimates on the company. The firm cut its 1997 outlook to 47 cents per share from 52 cents but upped its revenue expectation to $560 million from $548 million, saying it expects Netscape to reinvest more. Netscape late yesterday reported second-quarter earnings in line with expectations.
ascended 8 3/4 to an all-time high of 56 after
upped earnings estimates on the company. The company late yesterday reported second-quarter earnings of 25 cents per share, a dime better than the eight-analyst outlook and up from the year-earlier loss of 6 cents. The company also said the
Food and Drug Administration
approved a Spine-Tech procedure for treating lower back pain caused by degenerative disc disease.
agreed to carry
climbed 1 7/16 to an all-time high of 67 5/8 after reporting second-quarter earnings of $1.01 per share, in line with the 16-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 89 cents.
surged 2 5/16 to 115 15/16 after reporting second-quarter operating earnings of 76 cents per share, in line with the 29-analyst view and up from the year-ago 63 cents.
descended 3/4 to 38 1/8 despite reporting second-quarter operating earnings of $2.18 per share, 2 cents better than the 12-analyst forecast and up from the year-earlier $1.91.
slid 3/8 to 85 7/8 despite reporting second-quarter earnings of $1.17 per share, 3 cents ahead of the 15-analyst estimate and up from the year-ago 98 cents.
lost 1 7/8 to 98 7/16 after reporting second-quarter earnings of $1.01 per share, 2 cents shy of the 11-analyst view but up from the year-ago 91 cents.
Oil companies finished mixed to lower on earnings reports.
slipped 13/16 to 76 13/16 despite reporting second-quarter earnings of $1.26 per share, a big 16 cents better than the 24-analyst expectation but down from the year-earlier $1.34.
fell 2 to 73 1/2 despite reporting second-quarter operating earnings of $1.09 per share, 8 cents ahead of the 23-analyst view and up from the year-ago $1.02.
lost 7/16 to 38 1/2 after reporting second-quarter earnings from continuing operations of 39 cents per share, 6 cents short of the 24-analyst estimate and down from the year-ago 60 cents.
added 1/4 to 30 1/2 after reporting second-quarter earnings of 55 cents per share, 7 cents better than the 19-analyst outlook but down from the year-ago 59 cents.
Marathon's sister company
USX-U.S. Steel Group
rose 1 5/16 to 36 1/16 after reporting second-quarter operating earnings of $1.26 per share, a dime better than the 16-analyst expectation and up from the year-ago 35 cents. Elsewhere in the steel business,
gave up 1/4 to 57 3/4 after reporting second-quarter earnings of 83 cents per share, in line with the 14-analyst forecast and up from the year-ago 63 cents.
declined 3 3/4 to 47 7/8 after
downgraded the stock to attractive from buy. Qualcomm late yesterday reported third-quarter operating earnings of 35 cents per share, 3 cents better than the 14-analyst estimate and up from just 2 cents a year earlier.
fell 2 1/16 to 48 15/16 after reporting late yesterday second-quarter earnings of 50 cents per share, 2 cents better than the 10-analyst consensus and up from the year-ago 36 cents.
increased its six- to 12-month price target to 60 from 55.
was off 9/16 to 48 3/4 after reporting second-quarter earnings of 41 cents per share, 4 cents higher than the 13-analyst outlook and up from the year-ago 31 cents.
skidded 2 3/8 to 48 7/16 after Morgan Stanley downgraded the stock to neutral from outperform.
Great Lakes Chemical
lost 3/16 to 47 13/16 after reporting second-quarter earnings of $1.04 per share, in line with the 13-analyst estimate but down from the year-ago $1.20.