Oracle Provides Little Help For Stocks

Oracle’s moderately positive earnings outlook wasn’t much help for the rest of the market, which started Tuesday strong but ended the day weak.

The ISDEX finished fractionally higher at 210, and the Nasdaq added 4 to 1992, 65 points below its high and the index’s second straight close below 2000. The S&P 500 climbed 4 to 1212, and the Dow dropped 48 to 10,596. Volume rose to 1.18 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.95 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led 15 to 14 on the NYSE, and 21 to 15 on the Nasdaq. For earnings reports, visit our earnings calendar at and reported earnings at For after hours quotes and news, visit our after hours trading site at

After the close, Tellabs delivered the latest dismal outlook from a telecom equipment company, warning of a breakeven quarter, 29 cent below estimates. More cautious comments from Cisco caused that stock to slip. And Jabil topped estimates but said it sees no sign of a rebound in demand.

During the day, Oracle surged 1.86 to 16.70 after topping estimates by a penny with 15-cent earnings, but revenues came in about $100 million light at $3.26 billion. The company said that business may have bottomed. Next quarter will be flat, with some room for upside, but strong growth likely won’t return until the end of the year.

Software stocks got a boost on Oracle’s report, but that was about it. Ariba , Commerce One , i2 , Microsoft , SAP and Siebel were among those trading higher on the day.

Chip stocks were weak on news that Advanced Micro was asking analysts for their financial models on the company, a sign of a potential warning, and that Intel was stuffing the channel in order to make its quarter.

Check Point surged 2.46 to 45.50 on positive comments from Wit SoundView.

NVIDIA dropped 5.18 to 86.11 on rumors of channel stuffing.

Qwest rose 1.45 to 31.27 after reaffirming guidance.

Some technical comments on the market: Note: We include charts in the technical market commentary. If you can’t get the charts via the e-mail newsletter version, try this link:

Black candlesticks all around today, as a strong open faded by the close. The only good news is that the indexes didn’t exceed their recent lows by much. For the Nasdaq (first chart and second charts; note that it continues to hold above its broken September downtrend line in the second chart), support is 1973, the 50% retracement of the 1619-2328 run, and critical resistance is 2100. For the S&P 500 (third chart), support is 1200 and resistance is 1250. The S&P looks like it is forming a bear flag the last few days, a sign of potential further downside. For the Dow (fourth chart), 10,560 is first support, then 10,475. 10,700 is first resistance and 10,870 is critical resistance.

Special report: For a free introduction to technical chart patterns and an overview of last year’s action in the stock market, visit,1785,2571_500051,00.html.

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