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Thursday 20th of November 2008
April 20, 2006

New York markets mixed at midday


by Elaine Frei

At midday on Thursday in New York, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up to its highest level in six years, while the S&P was up only slightly and the Nasdaq Composite had fallen. The Dow was up 0.6 percent to 11,341.61, the S&P had risen 0.1 percent to 1,311.17, and the Nasdaq was down 0.5 percent to 2,359.64.

General Motors was up 9.4 percent to $22.51 on indications that it was beginning to recover from its recent problems. It’s first quarter loss of $323 million was much better than had been predicted, and an analyst at Credit Suisse said that without special expenditures and healthcare costs, GM would have actually posted a small profit for the quarter. Ford Motor, helped by General Motors’ advance, gained 3.4 percent to $7.99.

A sell-off of Ebay stock led to a drop on the day of 8.1 percent to $37.09, hurt the Nasdaq. Ebay’s decline came after it said sales and profits will be lower than had been expected in 2006. However, Nasdaq’s decline was limited by Apple’s advance of 3.4 percent on the day to $69.17. The gain came on a second-quarter report that showed revenue up by 41 percent. Also in computer-related businesses, chipmaker Intel was up 0.2 percent to $19.60 on a better-than-expected first quarter report.

The banking sector was mixed. Bank of America added 1 percent to $46.53 after a report that first-quarter profits were up by 14 percent. Bank of New York, however, was down 2.6 percent to $34.77 even though it reported an 11-percent rise in net income in the first quarter.

Merck gained 1.9 percent to $35.04. The pharmaceutical company said that its quarterly profits were up by 11 percent, more than had been expected.

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