April 15, 2024

Stocks and Bonds: Tech Stocks Bolster Market, Following Cisco Higher

Cisco rose nearly 5 percent, the most of any stock in the Dow Jones industrial average. The chief executive, John T. Chambers, said in a memo to employees that recent missteps were “unacceptable.” Analysts say the company is overly reliant on revenue from state and local governments. Mr. Chambers promised that major changes were coming, though he offered few specifics.

Other technology companies also rose. Hewlett-Packard rose 2.2 percent, while Microsoft and the chip maker Qualcomm each rose more than 1 percent. Broadcom gained 3.9 percent after an Oppenheimer analyst said the semiconductor company would benefit from higher sales of mobile phones.

Chip stocks were still a big focus for investors since Texas Instruments said Monday that it would pay $6.5 billion in cash for National Semiconductor.

Materials and energy companies fell. Monsanto, the seed company, lost 5.7 percent after it issued an earnings forecast for the year that fell below analysts’ expectations.

Energy companies fell the most of any group within the S. P. 500 index. Halliburton and Baker Hughes each lost more than 2 percent. The Energy Information Administration said crude supplies in the United States grew more than expected last week, rising by two million barrels. Analysts expected an increase of 1.3 million barrels. Gasoline demand also dropped by 112,000 barrels a day.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 32.85 points, or 0.27 percent, to 12,426.75. The Standard Poor’s 500-stock index edged up 2.91 points, or 0.22 percent, to 1,335.54. The Nasdaq composite index rose 8.63 points, or 0.31 percent, to 2,799.82.

Oil prices rose, passing $109 a barrel at one point, as the dollar mostly weakened against major foreign currencies. The euro climbed to a 15-month high a day before the European Central Bank was expected to increase interest rates.

Traders want to see how higher prices for oil, gas and other raw materials are affecting corporate profits. They will get their first glimpse next Monday, when Alcoa reports its first-quarter earnings, providing the unofficial start of earnings season.

Abercrombie Fitch rose 3 percent after several analysts raised their price targets on the company, citing the retailer’s strong 2012 earnings outlook and international prospects.

Interest rates rose. The Treasury’s benchmark 10-year note fell 17/32, to 100 21/32, and the yield rose to 3.55 percent from 3.48 percent late Tuesday.

Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=4bef71a1b33fa205f2d0ad66e499e8b4

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