Closing Market Report

Star-Bulletin news services

Wednesday, January 20, 1999

Dow slips 19.3

NEW YORK -- Blue-chip stocks gave back strong early gains in the final hour of today's session to close lower on the day, after investors sold their holdings to lock in profits.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 19.31 points to close at 9,335.91. The Dow got as high as 9,480.09, up nearly 125, before sellers stepped in late in the session.

Broader indexes ended higher today, but technology stocks trimmed strong early gains as well.

Decliners led advancers by 1,559 to 1,449 on the New York Stock Exchange, with 526 unchanged. NYSE volume was 904.77 million shares vs. 786.72 million yesterday.

The Standard & Poor's 500 rose 4.62 to 1,256.62, and the technology-heavy Nasdaq composite index gained 7.32 to 2,415.49. The NYSE composite index climbed 1.26 to 596.09, and the American Stock Exchange composite index rose 4.76 to 712.37. But the Russell 2000 index of smaller companies fell 0.27 to 430.62.

Stocks were initially higher on positive earnings reports and relief that Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan didn't say anything too damaging when he testified before a Congressional committee.

The price of the Treasury's main 30-year bond was off 11/32 point, or $3.4410.31 per $1,000 in face value, by late afternoon, while its yield rose to 5.17 percent from 5.14 percent late yesterday.

Overseas, Japan's Nikkei stock index staged a rally and closed above the 14,000-point level today for the first time since Dec. 21. The index rose 257.61 points, to 1.87 percent, to close at 14,028.05. In other markets, London's FTSE 100 gained 1.29 percent and Germany's Dax index was up 1.4 percent.

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