Dow falls 19 points, Nasdaq is up 13 Earnings warning from Coke helps depress the industrial average

Wall Street

December 12, 1998|By BLOOMBERG NEWS

NEW YORK -- U.S. stocks were mixed yesterday, as Coca-Cola Co. joined the list of Dow Jones industrial average companies warning that profits won't meet forecasts. Computer shares continued to gain.

The Dow average fell 19.82, to 8,821.76, paring a 111-point loss. Coke was the biggest decliner in the average, which dropped for a fourth straight day.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index finished at 1,166.46, up 1.44. The Nasdaq composite index gained 13.35, to 2,029.31.

The Russell 2,000 index of small-cap stocks slipped 1.13, to 395.37; the Wilshire 5,000 index lost 3.48, to 10,643.58; the American Stock Exchange composite index skidded 4.40, to 657.76; and the S&P 400 midcap index fell 1.36, to 350.85.

The Sun-Bloomberg Maryland index of the top 100 Maryland stocks fell 1.36, to 190.69.

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

Coke fell $3.1875 to $62.875 after the world's biggest soft-drink maker said fourth-quarter profit will be as much as 20 percent below expectations because slowing economies in Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe are hurting sales. That helped push down shares of big financial companies that also depend on markets outside the United States.

Coke was the seventh member of the Dow average this month to decline after warning investors that earnings wouldn't meet forecasts. It joined J. P. Morgan & Co., Merck & Co., Procter & Gamble Co., Union Carbide Co., Boeing Co. and Sears, Roebuck & Co.

The declines yesterday were balanced by a rally in computer shares such as Oracle Corp. and Cisco Systems Inc.

For the week, the Dow industrials lost 2.2 percent, the S&P 500 fell 0.9 percent, the Nasdaq rose 1.3 percent and the Russell 2,000 fell 0.8 percent.

Banking and other financial shares, which had slumped Thursday after J. P. Morgan's warning, fell again. American Express Co. fell $3.375 to $93.75, contributing the most to the Dow industrials' loss. Merrill Lynch & Co. lost $2.625 to $66. Bank One Corp. dropped 68.75 cents to $52.6875.

AMR Corp. dropped $4.25 to $58.25 after the parent of No. 2 U.S. carrier American Airlines warned analysts that its fourth-quarter earnings would fall below expectations because of weak revenue. The shares have declined 17 percent since Dec. 2.

Oracle Corp., the world's largest database software maker, gained $2.3125 to $37.25 after reporting that its fiscal second-quarter net income rose 46 percent, topping the average estimate from analysts. Cisco Systems Inc. rose $2.3125 to $83.50; Microsoft Corp. added $2.4375 to $134; and Compaq Computer Corp. advanced $1.8125 to $41.875.

Retailer Gap Inc. rose $2.8125 to $50.75, and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. climbed 56.25 cents to $76.3125. Saks Inc., owner of Saks Fifth Avenue and other department stores, gained $1.375 to $27.

Ciena Corp. fell $1.75 to $15.625 after the top seller of equipment used to boost phone network capacity warned of possible losses for the next two quarters, as it cuts prices to match competitors.

Newell Co., the sixth largest U.S. maker of consumer and household products, slumped $3.125 to $38.25 after saying it expects fourth-quarter earnings to fall short of Wall Street forecasts because of disappointing sales of Calphalon cookware and Rolodex card files. Rubbermaid Inc., which Newell agreed to buy in October for $5.8 billion, fell $1.953 to $29.2969.

Borg-Warner Automotive Inc. gained $3.6875 to $48.50 after the maker of automatic transmissions and four-wheel-drive systems said it sees fourth-quarter earnings at the "high end" of analyst estimates as the company benefits from increased demand for engine turbocharger systems.

Telxon Corp., a maker of bar-code transmitters, plunged $12.25 to $15 after it restated second-quarter results after a review with its auditors and posted a loss.

Pub Date: 12/12/98

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