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Thursday, May 27, 1999

Going down? We think you know the answer to that. Also the NASD approves a proposal on late trading.


Johnson & Johnson

(JNJ) - Get Johnson & Johnson Report

, up 1/4, or a whopping 0.28%, to 90 1/4.

That concludes the list of positive closes in the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

today. Every other stock, except perhaps for break-even Steven


(BA) - Get The Boeing Company Report

, did its part in helping that blue-chip index plummet 235.23 to 10,466.93, not to mention throwing into relief the

aberrant character of

yesterday's surprise blue-chip rally. The S&P 500 got rocked, too, closing down 23.35 to 1281.41.

Other indices took less dramatic damage. The

Nasdaq Composite Index

8.04 to 2419.14; the smallish-cap

Russell 2000

dropped 2.49 to 432.92; and

Scroll to Continue

TheStreet Recommends Internet Sector

index pulled back 12.63 to 559.38.

In other U.S. markets news, the

National Association of Securities Dealers'

board today approved a proposal to establish a late trading session for the

Nasdaq Stock Market


American Stock Exchange

. The second session would run Monday through Thursday from 5:30 p.m. EST to as late as 10 p.m. EST. The

Securities Exchange Commission

still needs to approve the proposal.

The big European indices finished squarely in the red, led by the Frankfurt


, which lost about 1.5%. In Brazil, the volatile


was down about 2.5% entering the afternoon session.

Asian markets were weak overnight, as Hong Kong's

Hang Seng

dropped 100.63 to 12,308.53, and Tokyo's


fell 53.3 to 16,177.19.

More markets action and news is available in


Markets section.


Bermuda-based insurer



said it plans to acquire specialty reinsurer

Capital Re

(KRE) - Get SPDR S&P Regional Banking ETF Report

for about $606 million in stock.



negotiations to buy


(TX) - Get Ternium S.A. American Depositary Shares (each representing ten shares USD1.00 par value) Report

in a $42.8 billion stock deal have come to a standstill because of issues of who would lead the combined entity and how to deal with Texaco's joint ventures with refineries and service stations, according to

The Wall Street Journal

, which cited people familiar with the talks.

Moving into the league lead with a two-day acquisition streak,

Charter Communications

, a subsidiary of


(MSFT) - Get Microsoft Corporation Report


Paul Allen's

umbrella company

Vulcan Northwest

, is buying Denver cable firm

Fanch Communications

for more than $2 billion. Yesterday Charter agreed to buy closely held

Falcon Cable

for $3.6 billion in cash, stock and assumed debt.

Radio broadcaster

Infinity Broadcasting

(INF) - Get Brookfield Global Listed Infrastructure Income Fund Inc. Report

, 82% of which is owned by


(CBS) - Get CBS Corporation Class B Report

, is buying billboard company

Outdoor Systems


for about $8.3 billion in stock and assumed debt.



James Cramer

almost dipped into his Percodan stash on

the news.


Federal Trade Commission

approved the $13.5 billion combination of supermarkets


(KR) - Get Kroger Company (The) Report


Fred Meyer

(FMY) - Get First Trust Motgage Income Fund of Beneficial Interest Report

. The deal will create the nation's largest grocery chain.

Northrop Grumman

(NOC) - Get Northrop Grumman Corporation Report

agreed to buy

Allegheny Teledyne

(ALT) - Get Altimmune Inc. Report


Ryan Aeronautical

, which makes airborne reconnaissance and surveillance systems for the military, for $140 million in cash.


Patriot American Hospitality

(PAH) - Get Element Solutions, Inc. Report

and paired management company

Wyndham International

set the terms of the spinoff of

Interstate Hotels

. Wyndham will distribute 92% of Interstate to shareholders as a dividend, and retain the remaining 8% jointly with

Marriott International

(MAR) - Get Marriott International Report


Pharma firm


(PFE) - Get Pfizer Inc. Report

named Henry McKinnell COO and president and elected John Niblack vice chairman.

More news on companies and stocks is available in


Stock News section.


Software company


filed yesterday with the SEC to raise about $46 million in an IPO.

Take that fork out of the Internet boom -- it's not done yet. Spanish language Web portal

StarMedia Networks

(STRM) - Get Streamline Health Solutions Inc. Report

rocketed up 19 3/8, or 74.5%, to 45 3/8 in its second day of trading.



is buying Internet access software maker


in a $130 million pooling-of-interests deal.

More tech news and commentary is available in


Tech Stocks section.

General News


Commerce Department

released figures showing

gross domestic product

growing at a 4.1% clip for the first quarter of 1999, 0.2 percentage points below expectations and down from the previous quarter's 6% increase.


Labor Department

said that

initial jobless claims

for the week ended May 22 totaled 300,000, in line with expectations and essentially unchanged from the week earlier.

The Yugoslav war crimes tribunal has indicted President

Slobodan Milosevic

and four others for atrocities in Kosovo, marking the first time an international court brought such charges against a sitting head of state. The

United Nations

has already issued arrest warrants for Milosevic for war crimes allegedly committed this year in Kosovo.


Deutsche Bank

is buying


, Germany's second-largest cable TV network, from diversified German companies




for about $773 million in cash and debt. Deutsche's strategy is to bundle several companies' cable assets into a single company and sell it to investors.

An Amsterdam court upheld



sale of a 42% stake to


against the complaints of

LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton


, but the court also annulled a Gucci employee stock option plan that diluted LVMH's stake in the company. LVMH said it will take its case to another Amsterdam court.

More international news and commentary is available in


International section.


Three men turned themselves in to Wisconsin police yesterday for stealing a print of

Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace

from a theater last weekend. The print's black-market value has been estimated at more than $60,000 -- still a hefty discount to the full admission price for the film in Manhattan.

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latest MonEmailbag ran Saturday in


Commentary section.