Stocks Mixed Ahead Of Key Earnings, CPI

Stocks traded mixed Monday morning, ahead of Tuesday’s Consumer Price Index and earnings reports from Microsoft and Intel.

The ISDEX rose 9 to 835, and the Nasdaq gained 30 to 4276. The S&P 500 added 1 to 1511, but the Dow declined 35 to 10,777. Volume declined to 415 million shares on the NYSE and 740 million on the Nasdaq. Declining issues led 14 to 11 on the NYSE, but advancers led 18 to 17 on the Nasdaq. June’s Consumer Price will come out tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. Analysts expect a 0.4% increase in the CPI and a 0.2% increase in the core number. Microsoft and Intel report earnings after the bell tomorrow. Go2Net is among the companies reporting tonight. For earnings reports, visit our earnings calendar and reported earnings. soared 3 9/16 to 7 11/16 on news that it has agreed to be acquired by and the Tribune Company . Online recruiters moved higher on the news. rose 7/16 to 17 7/8, gained 1/2 to 8 1/2, and WebHire added 1/2 to 3 1/8.

Internet infrastructure plays were higher after Corning reported second-quarter earnings of 94 cents a share, beating estimates by 14 cents. Corning rose 14 1/4 to 281 1/4, SDL bolted 21 to 390 1/2, New Focus soared 22 to 132 1/4, and Avanex rose 12 3/4 to 143 7/8.

VerticalNet soared 7 5/16 to 58 7/16 after Goldman Sachs raised the issue to Recommended List from Outperform and set a $75 price target. Goldman Sachs said the market has yet to recognize the company’s growth or its move into electronic component trading.

Liberate Technologies gained 2 13/16 to 36 15/16 on news of a $100 million investment from Cisco , and rumors of a potential takeover.

eToys gained 21/32 to 6 11/32 on news that may be interested in acquiring the company.

BroadVision gained 2 15/16 to 43 7/8 on news of a contract win from E*Trade . E.piphany gained 2 1/2 to 137 1/2 on news of a contract win from Home Depot .

Exodus fell 2 1/2 to 52 3/4 on news that a deal to buy Global Crossing’s Web hosting business may fall apart, and that instead Exodus may be talking to Digex , which gained 6 to 84 3/4. soared 2 3/4 to 9 1/4 on news that it is seeking $39 million to help it become cash-flow positive.

Some technical comments on the market: The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq may both be forming rising wedges here, potentially bearish developments. The S&P’s has been forming in the 60-minute chart since bottoming under 1440; this would appear to imply a rapid return to the 1440 level on a break to the downside, which could come in the next day or two. Below that is the important support of 1380, the lower boundary of our head-and-shoulders/diamond pattern. A break of that lower boundary could carry the S&P as low as 1150, so we want to hold that level. The Nasdaq’s rising wedge is potentially more troubling, as it appears on the daily and weekly charts and begins at the index’s 3042 bottom in May; a break of this pattern to the downside would imply a rapid return to that level, and potentially lower. As rising wedges occur frequently in bear markets, and we have major topping patterns on the S&P and the Dow, the implications would appear to be pretty ominous. Again, we will wait for the breaks for confirmation. The indexes have moved higher in nice moves as of late, which would appear on the surface to be a positive, but the patterns th

ey are moving in normally do not make for lasting advances. The Nasdaq appears to be set up for a run to its 62% retracement level of 4337. A break below 4073 would negate the index’s recent breakout, and a break below 4000 would likely break the rising wedge. Recent support on the Nasdaq is in the 3820-3830 range, and key support is at 3725 and 3585. The ISDEX is approaching its 50% retracement level of 845, and a break of 850 resistance would likely carry the index to 880. A break below 790 would negate the ISDEX’s recent breakout. To the downside, 700 has proven strong support; a break of that number could give the index room to 600.

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