Midday Markets: Qwest, eBay sink techs

Larry Dignan
2 min read

Technology issues were sluggish at midday Monday as Internet stocks and shares of Qwest hampered the Nasdaq. The Nasdaq was off 11.98 to 2,435.90 and the Dow Jones industrial average added 84.22 to 10,574.73.

The Inter@ctive Week @Net index slumped 9 to 269.

Analysts said trading was light ahead of Wednesday's release of the Consumer Price Index for May.

"We are dealing with a series of complex cross-currents," said Alan Ackerman, market strategist at Fahnestock & Co. "But on balance the outlook is still uncertain ahead of the CPI number."

Among the losers of the day, shares of Qwest Communications International Inc. (Nasdaq: QWST) tumbled 19 percent to 36 1/4 and was easily the most active issue on the Nasdaq. The company made an unsolicited bid for US West (NYSE: USW) and Frontier Corp. (NYSE: FRO), two companies that have agreed to merge with Global Crossing Ltd. (Nasdaq: GBLX).

Global Crossing dipped 2 to 48 3/4. Frontier gained 3 9/16 to 59 and US West added 3 9/16 to 58 7/16 as both stocks jumped about 6 percent. MCI WorldCom Inc. (Nasdaq: WCOM) was up 1 1/4 to 89 3/4 and AT&T Corp. (NYSE: T) slipped 1/32 to 53 1/8.

EBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY) ruined the day for Net stocks. Numerous outages will shave $3 million to $5 million from the company's second quarter revenue. Shares of eBay fell 15 1/8 to 150 3/4.

Other Net issues were weak. DoubleClick Inc. (Nasdaq: DCLK) lost 10 1/16 after the company said it would acquire a consumer marketing firm for $1 billion.

Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO) lost 4 1/4 to 131, Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) fell 6 3/16 to 99 5/8, America Online Inc. (NYSE: AOL) dipped 5 1/8 to 94 3/8. EToys Inc. (Nasdaq: ETYS) fell 6 9/16 to 43 1/4 even though the company's IPO underwriters started coverage of the issue with "buy" and "market outperform" ratings.

Oracle Corp. (Nasdaq: ORCL), however, bucked the downward trend ahead of the company's fourth quarter earnings.

Among other high-profile tech issues, Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) added 11/16 to 78 13/16, Dell Computer Corp. (Nasdaq: DELL) lost 3/16 to 34, Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) was up 3/8 to 54 13/16, IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM) jumped 1 to 115 5/16 and Compaq Computer Corp. (NYSE: CPQ) gained 1/16 to 22 3/8.

Reuters contributed to this report.