RealTime IT News

Tech Stocks Plunge as Worries Return

An unexpected downturn in Northeast manufacturing and falling commodity prices raised fears that economic woes will continue, sending stocks to their steepest losses in a month on Monday.

The selling was pretty evenly distributed across the tech sector, with Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO), Oracle (NASDAQ: ORCL), Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA), Dell (NASDAQ: DELL), Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) and Research in Motion (NASDAQ: RIMM) among the names losing more than the Nasdaq's 2.3% decline.

RIM will report its quarterly results late Thursday, and analysts will be watching closely to see how the company is faring against stiff competition from Palm (NASDAQ: PALM) and Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL). Despite the weak economy and competition, analysts still expect 52% sales growth from RIM for the quarter.

Rambus (NASDAQ: RMBS) continued to gain on hopes for an antitrust settlement with the EU, adding another 10%, but Palm finally lost a little ground after a dramatic run-up last week.

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) ended the day with a small gain and Yahoo (NASDAQ: YHOO) finished flat after Citigroup said Yahoo remains an attractive acquisition candidate.

The Nasdaq lost 42 to 1816, the S&P 500 fell 22 to 923, and the Dow plunged 187 to 8612. Volume rose to 4.7 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.2 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led by a 31-6 margin on the NYSE, and 21-5 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 93% on the NYSE, and 77% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 24-46 on the NYSE, and 13-19 on the Nasdaq.