Amazon Warns, To Cut 15% Of Workforce

Amazon.com beat estimates after the bell, but the company warned of lower than expected future results and announced that it will cut 15% of its workforce.

The ISDEX http://www.wsrn.com/apps/ISDEX/ slipped 4 to 438, and the Nasdaq traded about as close to unchanged as possible: up 0.01 to 2838.35. The S&P 500 climbed 9 to 1373, and the Dow soared 179 to 10,881. Volume rose to 1.13 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.05 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 18 to 12 on the NYSE, and 21 to 16 on the Nasdaq. The Federal Reserve will announce its decision on interest rates at 2:15 tomorrow; traders are expecting a 50-basis point rate cut. Consumer confidence fell to its lowest level in four years, and consumers’ expectations for the future fell to recessionary levels. Fourth quarter GDP will be reported tomorrow morning. 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.

After the bell, Amazon beat estimates by a penny with a 25-cent loss, but the company warned that first quarter revenues will be 15-20% below estimates. Amazon said it will cut 1,300 jobs, or 15% of its workforce, and said it still expects to reach profitability by the end of the year. The stock fell 1 to 19 in after hours trading. Also after hours, Adobe and Applied Materials warned, while Advanced Fibre , Aware and PeopleSoft topped estimates. RealNetworks matched estimates.

During the day, InfoSpace slipped 3/8 to 5 5/8 despite topping estimates by 3 cents with 4-cent earnings. But the company warned of future results and announced a major shift in business focus away from its consumer portals.

Nokia fell 1.71 to 35.28 after warning of weaker than expected results, continuing a string of troubles for wireless handset makers.

AvantGo soared 1 7/8 to 9 3/8 on an alliance with Research In Motion . AVGO reports earnings tonight.

AOL Time Warner lost .25 to 54.75 ahead of its earnings report tomorrow morning.

Brocade dropped 6 7/16 to 98 1/2 on negative comments from Goldman Sachs.

Ariba edged 1/8 higher to 38 1/2 on positive comments from Lehman Brothers, which said the company’s acquisition of Agile fills a need for a collaborative product design offering.

eGain surged 27/32 to 5 3/4 after beating estimates and announcing that it expects to be breakeven by the end of the year. iBasis , up 2 to 9 3/16, said it expects to achieve profitability in the first quarter of 2002, and also announced a partnership with red-hot Openwave .

Expedia tacked on 5/8 to 17 3/8 after beating estimates by 9 cents with a 6-cent loss. Eathlink also beat by 9 cents, with a loss of 42 cents, but the stock gave back 1/16 to 8 7/16.

MarketWatch.com , up 3/16 to 4 1/2, topped estimates, as did Hoover’s , off 5/16 to 3 9/16.

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 100 continues to form wha

t looks like a bull flag (the small blue lines in the first chart), giving the index 500-600 points of upside potential. Also, the index continues to hold above its broken September downtrend line, another plus.

On the intraday charts, the Nasdaq is trading below broken support (the gray line). One near-term support is that small black line at 2700, the top of the gap at 2618.55 (the corresponding gap in the Nasdaq 100 is 2470.72) that the index has so far refused to fill. Unless traders sell on the Fed news tomorrow, we expect it may be some time before that gap fills. The maximum downside expected on the Nasdaq is about 2550, the lower channel boundary (black line) in that chart. A lot of technical indicators on the Nasdaq have remained overbought, but the index has so far been pulling back just enough to get room for more upside, the reverse of the September-January decline.

The ISDEX is also trading below broken support (the gray line). Near-term support on the ISDEX is the small black line at 420, the top of a gap at 388. Maximum downside potential is 380-388.

The S&P 500 is clinging below a broken support line, the one thing that looks a little worrisome to us. The index could be forming a bear flag here. Maximum expected downside would be that lower black channel line at 1310.

Taking a longer-term look at the Dow, the index closed just beneath a downtrend line off its September high at 10,900. That trading range between the downtrend line and a line off its October bottom at about 10,550 will have to resolve soon, and it looks to us like it wants to resolve to the upside. 10,500 has been strong support on the index, and critical support is 10,300. A close above 11,007 would be bullish, particularly if the Dow Transports can get back above 3000 and stay there; the Trannies are comfortably back above 3000 today. A number of bullish signs are lining up in advance of the Fed decision; we’ll see how traders react at 2:15 tomorrow when that decision is announced, but the charts are setting up for a big advance.

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.

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