NEW YORK -- Investors decided to stick with safer bets today on Wall Street while they contemplated the future of earnings and the economy. The market bid blue chips higher, but cashed in gains in the battered tech sector.
Dow up 82.55
Although big-name companies reported fourth-quarter results largely in line with expectations, analysts said investors kept their focus on forecasts for 2001. "Fourth-quarter earnings have really left the radar screen for most investors," said Richard E. Cripps, strategist at Legg Mason.
The Dow Jones industrial made a solid advance, closing up 82.55 at 10,729.52.
But the Nasdaq composite index fell 104.87 to 2,754.28, and the broader Standard & Poor's 500 index slipped 6.79 to 1,357.51.
Advancers beat decliners by a nearly 4-to-3 margin on the New York Stock Exchange, with 1,589 up, 1,232 down and 460 unchanged. NYSE volume was 1.25 billion shares, vs. 1.28 billion yesterday. The NYSE composite index rose 2.11 to 658.37; the American Stock Exchange index gained 1.60 to 913.42; and the Russell 2000 index fell 3.25 to 499.00.
The 10-year Treasury note's price was up 14/32 point, or $4.38 per $1,000 in face value; its yield fell to 5.25 percent from 5.30 percent late yesterday. The 30-year bonds were up point and yielded 5.60 percent, down from 5.66 percent late yesterday.
The market is so focused on corporate performance during the first half of this year that even Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan failed to move stock prices. Greenspan testified before Congress, speaking mostly about longer-term tax cuts.