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Closing Market Report

Star-Bulletin news services

Tuesday, April 11, 2000

Dow up 100.5;
Nasdaq falls 132

Associated Press


NEW YORK - Technology stocks fell sharply today, wiping out the Nasdaq composite index's gains for the year. The volatile biotechnology sector was the latest catalyst for the steady decline of the index that just recently seemed unstoppable.

The Nasdaq composite index fell 132.30, or 3.16 percent, to close at 4,055.90. The choppy trading that has characterized the market in the past two weeks returned, with the Nasdaq paring an early loss of 178 points to fewer than 10 before heading lower again.

After weeks of tumultuous selling, the Nasdaq is now fractionally lower for the year and is nearly 20 percent below its peak of 5,048.62, which it reached March 10.

Broader stock indicators were mixed. The resurgent Dow Jones industrial average rose 100.52 to close at 11,287.08, its highest level since Jan. 20, when it closed at 11,351.30. The Dow is down 1.8 percent so far in 2000.

The Standard & Poor's 500 fell 3.87 to 1,500.59. Advancers beat decliners today by a 10-to-9 margin on the New York Stock Exchange, with 1,517 up, 1,435 down and 488 unchanged. NYSE volume totaled 972.76 million shares vs. 854.81 million yesterday. The NYSE composite index rose 1.49 to 661.20; the American Stock Exchange index fell 13.17 to 944.87; and the Russell 2000 index fell 8.53 to 510.13. The 30-year Treasury bond price fell 1 17/32 points, or $15.31 per $1,000 face amount; its yield rose 10 basis points to 5.77 percent.

Two downbeat earnings reports derailed the technology sector today. Biogen Inc., a leading biotechnology company, reported first-quarter earnings of 41 cents a share, below Wall Street expectations of 43 cents. Biogen cited a slowdown in demand for its multiple sclerosis treatment. Biogen fell $12, or 18.5 percent, to $53.

The broader technology sector declined after Motorola Inc. said it expects second-quarter and full-year 2000 earnings to fall short of analysts' views.

Motorola shares plummeted. $27, or 18 percent, to $124.

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