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RealTime IT News

Sellers Take Control

Sellers took control of the stock market on Friday, as continued signs of economic weakness outweighed an accommodative Federal Reserve.

The ISDEX http://www.wsrn.com/apps/ISDEX/ lost 27 to 386, and the Nasdaq fell 122 to 2660. The S&P 500 dropped 24 to 1349, and the Dow declined 119 to 10,864. Volume inched higher to 1.04 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.71 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led by 17 to 13 on the NYSE, and 24 to 13 on the Nasdaq. January job gains came in stronger than expected, but most of the gains came in construction, unemployment edged up, and December's jobs gain was revised sharply lower. For earnings reports, visit our earnings calendar at http://www.wsrn.com/apps/earnings/internet.xpl and reported earnings at http://www.wsrn.com/apps/earnings/ireported.xpl. For after hours quotes and news, visit our after hours trading site at http://www.afterhourstrading.com.

Cisco , down 2 3/4 to 35 1/2, reports earnings on Tuesday.

Critical Path was halted at 10 1/16 on concern about the company's revenue recognition practices, and President David Thatcher and Sales VP William Rinehart were placed on administrative leave. The few trades that went through were down about 60%.

Copper Mountain , off 1 7/8 to 5 15/16, matched earnings estimates but warned of future results.

Terra Lycos , down 1 5/16 to 14 1/4, continued to lose ground after the resignation yesterday of CEO Bob Davis amid a management shakeup.

VeriSign dropped 8 to 67 despite a positive analyst meeting yesterday.

RSA Security , off 2 15/16 to 58 13/16, announced a 3-for-2 stock split.

Netpliance , off 1/32 to 5/16, slashed its workforce by half.

Primus Knowledge , up 1 3/8 to 8 5/8, and EDGAR Online , unchanged at 2 11/16, beat estimates. Buy.com , down 13/32 to 1/2, missed estimates by a penny.

Some technical comments on the market: Note: We are now including charts in the technical market commentary. If you can't get the charts via the e-mail newsletter version, try this link: http://www.afterhourstrading.com/column.html

The Nasdaq (first chart) and Nasdaq 100 (second chart) broke what may have been the necklines of head-and-shoulders tops today (the blue lines). Both indexes are once again trying to fill gaps, at 2618.55 on the Nasdaq and 2470.72 on the Nasdaq 100. The Nasdaq 100 came within 2 points of filling its gap today; the index can go as low as 2420 or so without breaking down out of its rising channel (the black line). The Nasdaq can go as low as 2550 without breaking down out of its channel. The ISDEX (third chart) also broke down out of a head and shoulders top, with downside potential to 360, but that index filled its gap (388) today and is sitting right on support (380-388).

The S&P 500 is also breaking down, with downside potential to about 1310.

The Dow closed below its September downtrend line on the weekly chart (first chart) after piercing it yesterday and today. To the downside, we expect that lower trendline at about 10,650 to hold, if the Dow gets that low. A close above 11,007 would be bullish under Dow Theory, the oldest school of technical analysis, particularly if the Dow Transports can stay