Stocks Decline On UN Stalemate

A strong rally on Wednesday fizzled after Secretary of State Colin Powell’s address to the UN failed to win over doubters.

The Nasdaq lost 4 to 1301, the S&P 500 declined 4 to 843, and the Dow fell 28 to 7985, 167 points off its high for the day. Volume rose to 1.43 billion shares on the NYSE, but declined to 1.37 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led 18-14 on the NYSE, and 17-14 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 67% on the NYSE, and 59% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 49-50 on the NYSE, and 44-79 on the Nasdaq.

After the close, Expedia beat estimates and announced a stock split, but declined on news of the departure of founder and CEO Richard Barton. Agilent warned, J2 Global beat estimates, and Aether missed revenue estimates.

During the day, Cisco was unchanged after beating earnings estimates by 1-2 cents a share, but revenues of $4.71 billion missed $4.73 billion estimates. Cisco guided April quarter revenues 2-3% lower, and said companies are becoming even more conservative than they were last quarter. , eResearch , Computer Sciences , and Pegasus all surged on earnings reports.

WebEx lost 4.2% on its results.

Aether surged 10% on a deal with Sun Microsystems .

Overture gained 3% on an expanded partnership with AOL Europe.

Yahoo gained fractionally on news that it is considering expanding paid listings.

MIPS rose 5% on an alliance with Microsoft . Microsoft, off 0.8%, released a critical IE patch.

Terra Lycos , up 4%, added blogging.

AskJeeves gained 11% to a new 52-week high.

IBM , up 0.2%, announced a project to find treatments for smallpox.

Sonus , up 1%, upgraded its packet voice platform.

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