Strong Earnings Fail To Boost Broader Markets

The broader markets sank into negative territory despite a handful of
strong earnings results posted after the bell yesterday and favorable
consumer price index data. Blue chips sent the Dow moving cautiously lower,
off 19.24 to 11,068.23. Investors took some money off the table in tech
stocks and Internet issues, sending the Nasdaq tumbling 59.09 to 3854.77,
while the ISDEX fell 1.48%.


Shares of Oracle fell victim to profit taking, sagging
3 7/8 to 81 1/16 following better than expected earnings out after the bell
yesterday. The database software maker delivered $0.17 per share, roaring
past analysts’ estimates by four cents. In addition to strong revenue
numbers, the company also announced a 2-for-1 stock split effective October
13.


Adobe Systems followed suit with a 2-for-1 stock split
of its own, after reporting Q2 earnings of $0.57 per share, a nickel better
than consensus estimates. Shares of the desktop software developer rallied
on the news, soaring 8 5/8 to 134, after investors cheered the upside
surprise.


After posting a narrower than expected loss yesterday after the bell,
shares of Red Hat plunged 3 3/4 to 21 1/2. The open
source firm reported a penny loss, topping analysts’ forecasts by the same.
Revenue for the quarter came in at $18.5 million, 75% better than the year
ago same period.


[email protected] sold off 3/4 to 16 3/4 after a short-lived
rally yesterday following rumors that Ma Bell may be close to acquiring the
remaining stake of the high speed cable Internet access provider. Shares
also received an initial boost after [email protected]’s CFO Mark McEachen said
he expects his company to be profitable by Q4 2000 or Q1 2001.


Shares of Walt Disney Internet Group tacked on 1/2 to 14
7/8 on news that the company plans to unveil its new entertainment-focused
Go.com Web site. Included in the facelift is a revamped logo following the
vertical portal’s bitter trademark dispute with GoTo.com over a confusingly similar logo.


A day after acquiring rival ChinaRen.com to make it China’s largest
Internet portal, SINA.com announced the series launch
of “Interactive Internet Solutions” in collaboration with Microsoft , Intel , and Great Wall Computers. Shares
of SINA.com edged lower by 1/4 to 21 on the heels of the news.


After the bell yesterday, vitacost.com offered to merge operations with
ailing vitamin e-tailer, MotherNature.com . The proposed
buyout is the healthcare products retailer’s second in as many months,
already having been sought after by Sitestar.Com in an
$11.4 million bid. Shares of MotherNature.com trended up 1/16 to 23/32.

Paul Shread is on assignment. His technical commentary will resume
Monday, September 18.

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