Stocks Rise On Economic News

Stocks ended the first week of 2002 on an up note, bolstered by a better than expected unemployment report and a strong reading on the services sector.

The ISDEX rose 3 to 198, and the Nasdaq added 15 to 2059. The S&P 500 gained 7 to 1172, and the Dow climbed 87 to 10,259. Volume rose to 1.51 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.2 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 19 to 11 on the NYSE, and 21 to 14 on the Nasdaq.

VeriSign , off another 3%, continued to come under pressure on earnings concerns.

Broadcom gained 1.10 to 48.80 despite a JP Morgan comment that said the company may see short-term upside potential from new products, but that the stock is richly valued and long-term investors should wait for a pullback to the 30s.

Overture , the former, continued to hit new 52-week highs on bullish analyst comments. The company may expand its relationship with MSN.

Red Hat surged 16% on a positive mention in Business Week.

Adobe and BMC also posted strong gains on analyst comments.

Some technical comments on the market: Note: To see the charts in the text email newsletter, click on the story link at the top of the newsletter.

The Nasdaq (first chart) formed a doji star today; a gap down and red candlestick on Monday would signal a reversal. One bearish sign here is that the Nasdaq 100 (second chart) would form a lower high if that happened; similar negative divergences marked major tops in March and August 2000 and in January 2001. The Nasdaq 100 must take out its 1734.58 high from December 6. For the Nasdaq, critical support is 2020, and resistance is 2077-2100 (2093). On a weekly chart (third chart), the Nasdaq looks like it has room to run. The S&P 500 and 100 (fourth and fifth charts) continue to sit right at their lows from July and August; that 600 level on the S&P 100 is critical resistance here. The S&P 500 weekly (sixth chart) had a nice clean breakout today; above 1184, that’s another index with room to run. 1158 or so should now be support if that breakout is for real. The Dow (seventh and eight charts) looks good on both the daily and the weekly; next resistance is 10,320 – a biggie, the 40-month moving average – and support should now be 10,175 or so. Two negatives: commercial futures traders are now short the big Nasdaq futures again after a brief week long (the first long week since September 2000), and ECRI’s weekly leading index had a very sharp drop last week after getting back to flatline for the first time since September 2000. A very negative development if it continues.

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