Massive losses at insurance giant AIG and plans by Citigroup to shed half a trillion dollars in assets sent blue chip shares tumbling on Friday, but the tech sector managed to escape much of the sell-off on some strong earnings reports.
Priceline.com (NASDAQ: PCLN), RealNetworks (NASDAQ: RNWK), Activision (NASDAQ: ATVI) and Sonus Networks (NASDAQ: SONS) jumped 10% or more each on better than expected results, and Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA), VeriSign (NASDAQ: VRSN) and Quest Software (NASDAQ: QSFT) also rose on their earnings reports.
Together, the stocks helped limit the Nasdaq’s loss to 0.2% on a day when the Dow fell by 1%.
Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) also edged higher as it appeared to abandon its Yahoo (NASDAQ: YHOO) proxy battle. Both Yahoo and Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) lost ground even though it appears their partnership is moving ahead.
Sprint (NYSE: S) rose on speculation that it could be acquired by Deutsche Telecom (NYSE: DT).
Deltek (NASDAQ: DLTK), Cogent (NASDAQ: CCOI), Aware (NASDAQ: AWRE), Adept (NASDAQ: ADEP) and Jupitermedia (NASDAQ: JUPM), publisher of this Web site, fell on their results.
The Nasdaq lost 5 to 2445, the S&P fell 9 to 1388, and the Dow tumbled 120 to 12,745. Volume declined to 3.49 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.71 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led by an 18-14 margin on the NYSE, and 14-13 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 63% on the NYSE, and 55% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 83-86 on the NYSE, and 47-150 on the Nasdaq.