Dell Gives Stocks A Little Boost

A year to the day after a positive preannouncement from Dell Computer launched a huge six-week rally, another positive preannouncement from Dell launched a little rally.

The ISDEX slipped 1 to 150, and the Nasdaq added 5 to 1784. The S&P 500 rose 1 to 1126, and the Dow climbed 36 to 10,235. Volume rose to 1.27 billion shares on the NYSE, but declined to 1.72 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 17 to 13 on the NYSE, and 17 to 16 on the Nasdaq.

After the close, McData sent storage stocks lower on an earnings warning. Legato and Aspen also warned. Getty Images raised guidance.

During the day, Dell rose 2% after reaffirming earnings estimates and raising revenue guidance.

Check Point plunged 19% on an earnings warning, sending other security stocks lower.

In Focus fell 18% on a warning.

Western Digital gained 10% after raising guidance, but Inktomi and Compuware plunged on warnings.

Qualcomm lost ground on a downgrade, and Seibel fell 5% on news of a huge increase in swap deals.

Some technical comments on the market: Note: To see the charts in the text email newsletter, click on the story link at the top of the newsletter.

The Nasdaq (first two charts) continues to cling to critical 1770 support, and 1800-1805 is first resistance. 1757 and 1724-1731 are potential supports, and then the February low around 1700. The Dow (third and fourth charts) is another index on the edge. The index needs to get back above 10,265-10,300 to begin to look good again. Support can be found at 10,160, 10,100, 10,030-10,050 and 9970-10,000, but that chart looks like the Dow could head all the way to 9850 or so. The S&P (fifth chart) is holding critical support in the 1115-1125 range, but the S&P 100 (sixth chart) has already broken the comparable support level. Resistance on the S&P is 1130, 1140, and 1145-1148. Friday-Monday are potential cycle turn dates; we’ll look for signs of strong direction early next week.





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