Techs Shake Off Housing Slump
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Weak pending home and auto sales reports weighed on blue chip stocks Tuesday, but technology stocks continued to rise on hopes that better days lie ahead.
The Dow took a breather a day after hitting a new high and the S&P 500 remained stuck just below its all-time high, but the Nasdaq moved to a fresh post-2002 high on strength in Baidu.com, which soared 12.5% to $320.58 after JP Morgan set a $400 price target on the stock on growing Internet usage in China.
Ciena was another winner, surging 9% to $42.66 after raising margin guidance at its analyst day.
Palm shed 3.4% on its quarterly results, and Vignette fell 12.6% after warning that its sales will come in below Wall Street estimates.
Micron gained 4% ahead of its earnings report after the close, then gave back most of those gains after reporting a quarterly loss and 4.7% sales gain that were basically in line with Wall Street estimates. Micron said memory prices fell 15% in the quarter ended Aug. 30.
The Nasdaq rose 6 to 2747, the S&P slipped a fraction to 1546, and the Dow lost 40 to 14,047. Volume declined to 3.07 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.78 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led by an 18-13 margin on the NYSE, and 17-12 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 56% on the NYSE, and 63% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 179-59 on the NYSE, and 194-61 on the Nasdaq.