Closing Market Report

Star-Bulletin news services

Monday, April 19, 1999

Dow off 53; Nasdaq
sinks 5.6%

Associated Press

NEW YORK - A fierce selloff in technology shares this afternoon pounded the Nasdaq composite index down 5.6 percent and more than erased an intraday 270-point gain in the Dow Jones industrials.

The technology heavy Nasdaq composite dropped 138.43 points to close at 2,345.61. The only time the technology heavy index had a steeper one-day point drop was the 140.43-point pummeling of Aug. 31, a slide of 8.6 percent.

The Dow Jones industrial average ended a five-day string of record highs, falling 53.36 to close at 10,440.53. Earlier in the afternoon, the Dow was up 271.85 points to reach 10,765.74.

The Dow had easily cruised through the 10,500, 10,600 and 10,700 levels. But as investors saw the Nasdaq crumble under the weight of huge losses in technology shares, they began to sell blue chips as well, cashing in on a week of gains.

Despite the selloff among blue-chip issues, advancers beat decliners by nearly 2-to-1 on the New York Stock Exchange with 1,926 up, 1,194 down and 434 unchanged. Volume was close to a record, with nearly 1.218 billion shares changing hands on the Big Board vs. 1.006 billion on Friday.

The Standard & Poor's 500 composite was down 29.52 at 1,289.48. The NYSE composite index fell 9.02 to 615.88; the American Stock Exchange composite index declined 10.30 to 735.11; and the Russell 2000 index of smaller companies fell 9.14 to 412.44.

The 30-year bond rose 25/32 point, or $7.81 per $1,000 security, to 96 4/32, pushing its yield down 5 basis points to 5.52 percent.

Overseas, Japan's main stock index fell 1.05 percent. In Europe, the leading market indexes dropped 0.71 percent in Britain but rose 1.26 percent in Germany and 1.82 percent in France.

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