Nasdaq Gets Nervous

After an 80% run-up in 13 months, Nasdaq 2000 was too round a number for profit-takers to ignore.

The Nasdaq came within eight points of the 2000 level for the first time since January 2002 on news that the economy finally started to add jobs in September and October.

But concern that the Federal Reserve may soon be forced to raise interest rates, along with terrorism warnings in Saudi Arabia, brought an early rally to a halt, and stocks finished in the red.

The Nasdaq lost 5 to 1970, the S&P 500 fell 4 to 1053, and the Dow dropped 47 to 9809. Volume declined to 1.41 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.97 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 17-14 on the NYSE, and 16-15 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 50% on the NYSE, and 47% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 468-10 on the NYSE, and 452-13 on the Nasdaq.

NVIDIA soared 20% after beating estimates, and WebMD gained 10% on in-line results. Cypress Semi slipped 1% after raising guidance. soared 26% – and in the process exceeded the $2.50 bid for the company offered by parent Barnes and Noble .

Akamai surged 13% after settling a feud with Cable and Wireless .

PeopleSoft gained 1% despite a shareholders lawsuit.

Seagate fell 7% on negative comments by Goldman Sachs.

Jupitermedia , publisher of this Web site, rose 6% on a Piper Jaffray upgrade, a day after gaining 4% on better than expected results.

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