Stocks rise on word of favorable jobs scene Dow climbs 136 points to 9,016

Nasdaq jumps 2.5 percent to 2,003

December 05, 1998|By BLOOMBERG NEWS

NEW YORK -- U.S. stocks rose yesterday after a government report showed that unemployment dropped in November, increasing optimism that consumer spending will fuel corporate profit growth.

Regional banks such as Bank One Corp. led the gain on the prospect of stronger demand for credit. Computer-related companies, such as Microsoft Corp. and Lucent Technologies Inc., also rallied.

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed back over 9,000, rising 136.46 points, or 1.5 percent, to 9,016.14. The Standard & Poor's 500 index jumped 26.60 points, or 2.3 percent, to 1,176.74. The Nasdaq composite index, packed with computer shares, climbed 48.83 points, or 2.5 percent, to 2,003.16.

Still, for the week, the Dow fell 3.3 percent. The S&P 500 dropped 1.3 percent from a Nov. 28 record and the Nasdaq lost 0.7 percent.

Elsewhere on the broad market, the Russell 2,000 index of

small-capitalization stocks rose 3.37, to 398.37; the Wilshire 5,000 index jumped 200.31, to 10,743.65; the American Stock Exchange composite index advanced 6.86, to 660.39; the New York Stock Exchange composite index climbed 10.04 to 573.49, within 10 points of its record close; and the S&P 400 midcap index added 4.63, to 355.54.

The Sun-Bloomberg Maryland index of the top 100 Maryland stocks gained 3.19, to 193.75.

Almost twice as many shares rose as fell on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume on the Big Board yesterday totaled 709 million shares, below the daily average of 749 million for the past three months.

Bank One gained $2.25, to $54.375; Wachovia Corp. rose $2.625, to $89.50; and Wells Fargo Co. rose $1.5625, to $37.125.

BankBoston Corp. climbed $2.3125, to $41.25, after plunging 8.7 percent Thursday. The stock fell amid signs Brazil's economy is heading for recession; BankBoston gets about one-fifth of its profit from Latin America.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. rose $1.6875, to $73.1875.

Auto stocks rallied, sending Ford Motor Co. up $1.25, to $56.375. General Motors Corp. rose $1.50, to $69.50.

Semiconductor stocks added to their gains in the final hour of trading after the Semiconductor Industry Association said computer-chip sales rose 6.2 percent in October from September's level. Intel Corp. rose $6.8125, to $116.3125, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. gained $1.875, to $31.375. Micron Technology Inc. rallied $3.75, to $50.125, a 52-week high.

Microsoft, the world's biggest software maker, gained $5.25, to $127.375. Cisco Systems Inc. added $2.0625, to $78.25.

Lucent jumped $7.375, to $95.75, after the world's largest phone equipment maker told analysts and investors in a closed-door meeting that demand for its products is strong and all of its major plants are running at capacity.

Ubid Inc. jumped $33, to $48, in its first day of trading. The online auctioneer raised a greater-than-expected $23.7 million in an initial stock sale, providing further evidence of investors' strong interest in new Internet issues.

Johnson & Johnson rose $2.1875, to $81.75, after the world's fifth-largest drugmaker said Thursday that it will cut 4,100 jobs and close 36 plants because of sluggish sales growth.

J. D. Edwards & Co. sank $7.125, to $28, on concern that sales are slowing after the software maker said it was limiting its sales forecast to six months from nine months. A narrowed forecast can indicate slower sales, analysts said.

PairGain Technologies Inc. fell $2.0313, to $7.0313, after the phone-equipment maker said its fourth-quarter sales and profit will be lower than expected because it is losing business and cutting prices. It was expected to earn 16 cents in the fourth quarter, based on the average estimate of analysts polled by First Call.

Pub Date: 12/05/98

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