Tech and blue-chips stocks staged a decent rally in late trading Thursday but the uncertainty surrounding the presidential election kept stocks lower. The Dow fell 73 points to 10,834.25 while the Nasdaq slid 31 points to 3,200.35.
However, both indices were facing triple-digit deficits throughout most of the session.
"The markets abhor uncertainty," said Tom Madden, money manager with Federated Investors. "And we have at this moment very considerable uncertainty as to how the election process for arguably the most powerful public servant on the planet is to be determined."
Engage (ENGA) and 24/7 Media both collased after earnings misses and warnings sent investors scrambling. 24/7 Media lost $1.69 to $2.94 and Engage (ENGA) dropped $1 to $2.47.
Staying within the Internet sector, CMGI (CMGI) and Internet Capital Group (ICGE) both took a beating, falling $3.88 and $5.06 a share, respectively.
Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO) lost $6.19 to $58.88 after it announced that it will buy Kimo, a web portal in Taiwan, for over $146 million. Amazon.com (AMZN) shed $2.63 to $31.25 while eBay (EBAY) and America Online (AOL) fell $2.94 and $3.62 a share, respectively.
Intel (INTC) lost $1.31 to $41.38. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) clipped 69 cents to $21 and IBM (IBM) closed off 63 cents a share to $99.44.
Among widely held PC stocks, Dell (DELL) slid $1.94 to $28.38 ahead of its earnings report; Compaq (CPQ) dropped $2.25 to $27.13; Gateway (GTW) lost $1.80 to $46.20 and Apple Computer (AAPL) finished up 13 cents to $20.19.
Microsoft (MSFT) gained $1.44 to $70.88. Sun Microsystems (SUNW) lost $2.69 to $97.63 and Oracle (ORCL) moved up $2.38 to $27.19