Bulls Catch Their Breath

Stocks tried to extend their rally Wednesday a day after the stock market’s biggest one-day gain in five years, but fell victim to profit-taking in afternoon trading.

The major indexes were up 1% around midday, but $110 a barrel oil and a new low in the U.S. dollar renewed inflation concerns and sparked selling, sending stocks down modestly by the close.

KLA-Tencor led the decline in the tech sector, falling 10% on an Oppenheimer downgrade on loss of an Intel contract to rival Applied Materials.

Yahoo shed 2% on fears that Microsoft could lower its offer for the company if its quarterly results disappoint Wall Street next month.

Most tech leaders ended the day flat to lower, but IBM and Oracle posted modest gains.

Sirius and XM Satellite gained on hopes that their proposed merger may be nearing FTC approval.

TiVo climbed 3% on a YouTube deal with Google.

China Digital TV soared 28% on a deal with Intel.

DivX plunged on its outlook.

The Nasdaq lost 11 to 2243, the S&P fell 11 to 1308, and the Dow gave back 46 to 12,110. Volume declined to 4.41 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.16 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led by a 20-12 margin on the NYSE, and 16-12 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 69% on the NYSE, and 62% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 41-114 on the NYSE, and 45-221 on the Nasdaq.

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