RealTime IT News

Stocks Fall As Worries Rise

Mideast tensions, a deepening financial crisis in Argentina and Enron's bankruptcy filing all weighed on stocks on Monday.

The ISDEX http://www.wsrn.com/apps/ISDEX/ fell 6 to 172, and the Nasdaq lost 25 to 1904. The S&P 500 declined 9 to 1129, and the Dow fell 87 to 9763. Volume declined to 1.2 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.5 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led 18 to 12 on the NYSE, and 22 to 13 on the Nasdaq.

After the close, U.S. officials warned of the possibility of more terrorist attacks through mid-December. Synopsis announced that it will acquire Avant! , which soared on the news. RSA Security reaffirmed guidance.

During the day, a better than expected NAPM manufacturing reading didn't help, and a worse than expected Semiconductor Industry Association report and outlook hurt chip stocks.

Intel and Sun slipped ahead of mid-quarter updates on Thursday.

Cisco and Emulex fell ahead of analyst meetings tomorrow.

Domestic security stocks continued to gain, but stocks like InVision and OSI closed off their best levels.

Amazon slipped on neutral comments from Lehman analyst Holly Becker, but Yahoo climbed on optimistic comments from SoundView.

Some technical comments on the market: Note: We include 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 S&P (first chart) clearly broke down out of its bearish rising wedge today. That broken trendline, which should be around 1138-1145 tomorrow, is first resistance, and 1125 is first support and then 1118. The Dow (second chart) just barely held onto its lower trendline today, but it needs to open above 9800 tomorrow to avoid a breakdown. First support is 9700. The Nasdaq (third chart) has critical support at 1880. Resistance is 1915, 1922 and 1935-1941. Today was a potential cycle turn window for the market, and there were breakdowns everywhere, including the banking index (fourth chart). And GE (fifth chart) just plain looks ugly. Let's assume that all these bearish rising wedges play out according to the norm; traditionally, the pattern calls for a complete retrace of the ground gained within the wedge, or a complete retest of the September 21 lows. So far in this bear market, the best performance we've seen out of a broken bearish rising wedge belonged to Microsoft, which retraced 80% of its gains from January after breaking down in August. Every other rising wedge has led to new lows. The big cycle turn date for the market remains December 14, Chris Carolan's projected final bull market high and the start of a Puetz crash cycle. There is still a possibility of one last leg up in this rally, but if the Dow and the Nasdaq follow the S&P into breakdowns, the top will likely be in.

Special report: For a free introduction to technical chart patterns and an overview of last year's action in the stock market, visit http://www.internetstockreport.com/guest/article/0,1785,2571_500051,00.html.