Deals and disasters could rock the tech world Tuesday, as investors eye repercussions of some bellwether re-alignments -- Apple's profit warning and the earthquake in Taiwan. Asia was mixed, Europe was in the red, and the Dow is set to open lower.
Aside from causing death and destruction, Mother Nature may have thrown a wrench into the semiconductor food chain. After the massive earthquake in Taiwan, a major semiconductor production center, chip prices may be driven up.
A disaster is also on deck for Apple Computer Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) according to a warning issued late Monday that its fourth-quarter earnings will fall well below analysts' expectations. Apple is blaming a chip shortage due to production problems at Motorola Inc. (MOT).
On the hook-up front, Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HWP) may announce Tuesday it will sell Oracle Corp. 's (Nasdaq: ORCL) customer relationship management software.
CMGI Inc. (Nasdaq: CMGI) agreed to acquire AdForce Inc. (Nasdaq: ADFC) in a stock swap valued at approximately $500 million in a move that may push DoubleClick Inc. to the sidelines.
On the economic front, the U.S. trade balance for the month of July will be reported by the Commerce Department. The number is slated to come in at $23.8 billion, compared with $24.6 billion in the previous report.
Expect the following technology stocks to be among Tuesday's most actively traded issues: Adobe Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: ADBE), Apple Computer Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL), Cabletron Systems Inc. (NYSE: CS), 3Com Corp. (Nasdaq: COMS) and GST Telecommunications Inc. (Nasdaq: GSTX).
Blue-chip tech stocks showed some strength Monday, offsetting the losses absorbed by leading Internet offerings. The Dow Jones industrial average moved up 20 points to close at 10,823.90 while the Nasdaq gained 17 points to end at 2,886.15.
At the Bell
The Dow Jones industrial average may open about 42 points lower. The Standard & Poor's 500 index for June futures contracts was up 5.2 points to 1344 at 7:30 a.m. EST in 24-hour electronic trading.
The Inter@ctive Week @Net Index went up 2.1 to 310.28.
Trading in Asia was mixed following the earthquake in Taiwan. The Nikkei 225 rose 2.03 percent to 17,933, Singapore's Strait Times index lost 0.65 percent to 2,109 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 0.19 percent to 13,420.
European markets were moving up. London's FTSE 100 lost 1.16 percent to 5,986. The CAC 40 in Paris slipped 1.00 percent to 4,634 and the Xetra DAX in Frankfurt was up 0.89 percent to 5,304 at 6:50 a.m. EST.
Reuters contributed to this report.