Closing Market Report

Star-Bulletin news services

Thursday, December 6, 2001

Nasdaq continues rising
but Dow takes breather

By Lisa Singhania
Associated Press

NEW YORK >> Wall Street took an expected break from its two-session rally today, held back by disappointing retail sales reports and apprehension about a business forecast from Intel due out after the market closed.

Stocks drifted, leaving the major indexes almost unchanged but preserving the Dow Jones industrials' first close above 10,000 since Sept. 5. Analysts were pleased with the relative stability, noting the lack of strong selling suggested investors were feeling more comfortable about staying in the market.

The Dow slipped 15.15 to 10,099.14. The loss cut short a 350-point runup that had begun Tuesday. The Nasdaq composite index was up 7.43 at 2,054.27 -- its second straight session to close above 2,000, a level not seen since before the Sept. 11 terror attacks. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 3.25 to 1,167.10.

Advancer edged decliners on the New York Stock Exchange, with 1,572 up, 1,547 down and 222 unchanged. Volume was 1.45 billion shares vs. 1.75 billion yesterday.

The NYSE composite index fell 1.47 to 589.85, the American Stock Exchange composite index fell 2.49 to 827.10 and the Russell 2000 index gained 2.81 to 482.23.

The Treasury's 2-year note fell 632 to 99 2232; its yield rose 10 basis points to 3.15 percent. The 10-year note fell 2732 to 99 3132; its yield rose 11 basis points to 5.00 percent. The 30-year bond fell 1 1432 to 98 2732; its yield gained 10 basis points to 5.46 percent.

Investors had been expecting anemic retail sales, but the extent of the softness -- it was the weakest November since 1990 -- surprised some. Discount retailer Wal-Mart fell 80 cents to $55.77 after reporting November sales that came in at the low end of expectations. But Gap rose 75 cents to $14.33 despite reporting a 25 percent drop in November sales at stores open more than a year.

Chipmaker Intel fell 45 cents to $34.16 ahead of an earnings update due out after regular trading ended. After the close, Intel boosted its demand for fourth-quarter sales as holiday buying lifts demand for its newest Pentium 4 processors. The company said revenue will be $6.7 million to $6.9 billion, higher than its October forecast for sales in the $6.2 billion to $6.8 billion range.

Advanced Micro Devices, Intel's main competitor, also raised its forecast for fourth-quarter sales. It said demand for the Athlon XP processor has been robust and that revenue growth for the company in the quarter would be in the 10 percent or better range when compared with the third quarter.

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