The major stock indexes have gained about 60 percent off their March lows and corporate earnings are beginning to look up, but Wednesday provided a fresh reminder of the crisis that precipitated the worst bear market and recession since the 1930s.
Tech stocks were rallying on better than expected results from Yahoo (NASDAQ: YHOO) and SanDisk (NASDAQ: SNDK) when a noted analyst’s downgrade of Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC) sent the market to a loss in the final 45 minutes of trading.
Concerns about loan quality at Wells Fargo and price cuts by Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) left investors worrying once again about the pace of economic recovery.
Sun (NASDAQ: JAVA) lost ground on news of more layoffs, but Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) continued to gain following its stellar earnings news.
Polycom (NASDAQ: PLCM) and ClickSoftware (NASDAQ: CKSW) tumbled following their quarterly reports.
After the close, eBay (NASDAQ: EBAY) provided another source of worry with current quarter guidance that was a little light of estimates, but VMware (NYSE: VMW) managed to beat Wall Street expectations.
EMC (NYSE: EMC) and Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) will report earnings on Thursday, followed by a rare Friday morning report from Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT).
The Nasdaq lost 12 to 2150, the S&P 500 fell 9 to 1081, and the Dow lost 92 to 9949. Volume rose to 5.62 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.59 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led by a 24-13 margin on the NYSE, and 18-8 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 73 percent on the NYSE, and 73 percent on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 453-65 on the NYSE, and 155-19 on the Nasdaq.