Dow falls S&P and Nasdaq both rise

Computer issues strong

Big Board volume lightest in 2 months

October 27, 1998|By BLOOMBERG NEWS

NEW YORK -- U.S. stocks were mixed yesterday, as computer-makers rallied on reports that personal-computer sales rose more than expected in the third quarter and retailers declined amid concern that the economy is slowing.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 20.08, to 8,432.21. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world's largest retailer, accounted for half the decline.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 1.65, to 1,072.32. The Nasdaq composite index, dominated by computer shares, jumped 31.12, to 1,724.98.

Among other broad indexes, the Russell 2,000 index of small-capitalization stocks rose 5.02, to 372.07; the Wilshire 5,000 index gained 33.69, to 9,784.14; the American Stock Exchange composite index advanced 6.34, to 634.55; and the S&P 400 midcap index added 3.88, to 322.62.

The Sun-Bloomberg Maryland index of the top 100 Maryland stocks gained 1.93, to 185.55.

Three stocks rose for every two that fell on the New York Stock Exchange.

About 602 million shares changed hands on the NYSE, in the Big Board's lightest day since Aug. 24.

Dell Computer Corp. rose $4.25, to $62.50; International Business Machines Corp. gained $1.50, to $143.0625; and Gateway 2000 Inc. jumped $4.125, to $55.75.

Retailers fell after the National Association of Realtors reported weaker-than-expected September home sales, suggesting that the economy is losing steam. Wal-Mart, up 30 percent this month, fell $2.625, to $65.375. Dayton Hudson Corp. lost $1.75, to $43.0625, and Sears, Roebuck & Co. dropped 56.25 cents, to $44.1875.

EBay Inc., an online auction company, soared $23.25, or 46.4 percent, to $73.375 ahead of its earnings report, which is due for release after the close of trading today. BancBoston Robertson Stephens analyst Lauren Cooks Levitan expects Ebay to report third-quarter sales of $10.1 million, almost seven times the $1.5 million in revenue generated in the year-earlier quarter.

AT&T rose 43.75 cents, to $64.25, after the biggest U.S. long-distance telephone company reported earnings of $1 a share. SBC Communications Inc. jumped $2.25, to $44.6875. GTE Corp. rose $1.25, to $59.125.

American Express gained 50 cents, to $88.125, after the travel and financial services company said net income rose 9.5 percent, as credit-card and charge-card revenue increased.

Union Carbide Corp. fell 62.5 cents, to $39.1875, knocking three points off the Dow average. The seventh-largest U.S. chemicals manufacturer said third-quarter earnings fell 53 percent as Asian sales weakened, and warned that earnings will be depressed again this quarter.

Bankers Trust Corp. dropped $4, to $62.875. Deutsche Bank AG's chairman told the German news magazine Der Spiegel that his bank has not held takeover talks with Bankers Trust.

Bankers Trust last week rose almost 30 percent, partly on speculation of a takeover by Deutsche Bank and partly on BT's announcement that it made money in October, after reporting a $488 million third-quarter loss.

Boeing Co., the world's biggest passenger aircraft maker, fell 56.25 cents, to $35.125, after executives at United Airlines, one of Boeing's biggest customers, called it "dysfunctional."

The executives, who criticized Boeing's refusal to modify flaws in planes it had recently sold to United, said they could switch to rival Airbus Industrie SA for planes in the future unless the Seattle-based company agrees to "improve quality and support," Boeing was told in a memo.

FDX Corp. fell $3.1875, to $48.3125.

Pilots of the world's largest air-freight company were given approval by members Friday to order a slowdown at Federal Express during the peak holiday shipping season.

Pub Date: 10/27/98

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