Like a case of snowfall in spring, the major stock market indices were having a schizophrenic time this morning.
Once they settled down and picked a direction -- up -- it seemed the latest reading of
consumer confidence was boding well for some big tech sectors. The report, which showed an improvement in consumers' views about the economy this month, was
strong enough to ward off lousy news coming from some big-name tech companies.
Philadelphia Stock Exchange Semiconductor Index
was rising 3%, despite the latest earnings warnings from
. It warned last night of a second-quarter revenue and earnings shortfall. Fellow communication chipmaker
also issued a warning -- its second this month. These companies were falling on their news, but bulls were by and large adding semiconductor companies to their buying list.
, for example, were lately up 3.3% to $51, and
was rising 2.2% to $47.82.
Eric Gillin took a look at how analysts today are
slashing estimates for chipmakers. But the sector might have hit some kind of bottom recently, where it is able to shake off bits of bad news.
Wireless stocks were also mostly moving higher, despite news that reminded investors -- as if they needed any reminder -- that the sector is sick. The
Philadelphia Stock Exchange Wireless Telecom Sector
was climbing 3.8%. Even
was higher on
news it is cutting jobs. Rival
, however, was edging lower on news that it also is
While tech was getting some lift, financials still were under selling pressure. The
American Stock Exchange Securities Broker/Dealer Index
was lately off 0.5%, while the
Nasdaq Financial 100
was fallen 0.4%. "There is a little downward pressure and a little profit-taking across the board," Patrick Boyle, head financial trader at
Credit Suisse First Boston
said, adding that nothing else significant is moving these stocks.