RealTime IT News

Apple, AMD Push Techs Higher

Upgrades to Apple and AMD pushed the Nasdaq near its highs for the year on Monday.

Apple gained 5% after Bear Stearns upgraded the stock and set a $72 price target. Apple could gain from sales of an expected flash memory-based iPod, the firm said, adding that iPod sales could also boost Mac sales. JP Morgan also upped Apple on expectations for strong holiday iPod sales.

AMD jumped 7% after JMP Securities said it favors the chipmaker over rival Intel despite the latter's strong fourth-quarter guidance issued last week. AMD's earnings have more upside potential in 2005, the firm said.

The upgrades helped tech stocks outshine blue chips, which ended the day lower on downgrades to Pfizer and Alcoa .

The Nasdaq rose 3 to 2151, two points shy of its high for the year. The S&P 500 slipped 1 to 1190, and the Dow fell 45 to 10,547. Volume declined to 1.35 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.15 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led 19-14 on the NYSE, and 17-13 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 43% on the NYSE, and 68% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 234-34 on the NYSE, and 135-12 on the Nasdaq.

3Com slid 8% on a warning.

United Online gained 5% on a financing deal.

Cisco and Oracle edged higher at the start of big meetings this week, Cisco's analyst meeting and OracleWorld.

Texas Instruments rose ahead of its mid-quarter update after the close on Tuesday.

Komag climbed 7% after raising guidance.

SCM Microsystems soared 26% on a smart card deal with MPC Computers.

Shopping.com fell 14% on a downgrade.