Election Ruling Sends Stocks Higher

Bargain hunters snapped up shares of beaten-down stocks on Tuesday, aided by a ruling that could end Florida’s presidential election recount today. There was some uncertainty, however, whether the ruling could allow the recount to continue past today.

The ISDEX rose 25 to 556, and the Nasdaq bolted 128 to 3095. The S&P 500 climbed 25 to 1376, and the Dow rose 120 to 10,637. Volume rose to 498 million shares on the NYSE, but declined to 808 million shares on the Nasdaq. Advancers led by 16 to 9 on the NYSE and 22 to 12 on the Nasdaq. The Federal Reserve meets tomorrow, and the Consumer Price Index will be reported Thursday. For earnings reports, visit our earnings calendar and reported earnings. For after hours quotes and news, visit our after hours trading site.

In a reversal from yesterday, only 3 of 50 ISDEX stocks traded lower. B2B stocks came back strongly. Ariba soared 8 7/8 to 100 1/4, Commerce One surged 6 5/16 to 58 1/8, and i2 rose 16 5/8 to 133 15/16. FreeMarkets climbed 1 13/16 to 42 1/2 on an alliance with Mitsubishi.

CMGI lost 5/8 to 13 7/8 after announcing it plans to exit several business, including its ICast entertainment site and 1stup.com free ISP operation. The company will take charges of $83 million-$90 million next year. CS First Boston downgraded CMGI and Internet Capital Group , which lost 7/8 to 9 3/16.

Sycamore Networks , up 3 5/8 to 64 1/8, reports earnings after the close today. CS First Boston reiterated its Buy rating ahead of the earnings report, saying the firm expects positive results and outlook. Juniper Networks rose 11 to 175 9/16; a close above 180 would negate Friday’s technical breakdown.

Cisco rose 1 13/16 to 52 3/16 on an optical infrastructure alliance with Corning , up 5 3/8 to 64 3/8. Cisco also announced the acquisition of wireless network chip designer Radiata for $295 million.

BroadVision surged 3 1/4 to 32 1/8 on a Wit SoundView Strong Buy rating, saying the company’s 6.0 release early next year will resolve concerns over lack of a Java platform. The company is uniquely qualified to take advantage of the convergence of eCRM and B2B, the firm said.

MarchFirst rose 1/2 to 4 7/16 after announcing that it will lay off 10% of its workforce, or roughly 1,000 employees.

Investors ignored bad news. WebMD , up 5/16 to 10 7/16, missed earnings estimates. Amazon.com rose 13/16 to 28 5/8 despite reports that holiday sales have gotten off to a slow start.

Stamps.com rose 1/4 to 3 1/16 on news that the U.S. Postal Rate Commission has recommended the creation of a discount rate for First Class mail sent using Internet postage.

USinternetworking rose 1 15/32 to 5 7/32 after securing $300 million in funding.

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

As we said yesterday, the Nasdaq was at a potential strong support on a line across the 1996-1998 tops and the 1999 lows (see chart below). Now we’ll be following the index’s current rally to see if it looks better than the last one. Its first real Fibonacci test won’t come until 3402, the 38% retracement of the 4289-2859 decline. A lot

of technical damage to repair.

The ISDEX continues to form a potential broadening bottom, and touched that lower trendline at 510 yesterday. A break above the top line at 680 would mean a bottom is in, and give the index room to 850. A nice looking chart, but be on guard for a possible restest of that lower trendline.

The S&P 500 is repairing yesterday’s technical damage, climbing back above its 1994 logarithmic trendline at 1369. If we close below that line by more than 2%, or 1335, we may have seen the end of the bull market. The index’s repeatedly come very close to a major technical breakdown over the last month, but has somehow escaped from the abyss each time.

The Dow broke out of a small downtrend line this morning. First major resistance is 10,850, the old diamond apex, and critical resistance is 11,000, where the index has failed five times. However, if this rally continues, the higher lows on the S&P and Dow are positives for the old economy stocks.

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

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