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March 28th, 2000

[4:00 PM] Apple Stock Watch: Stock Markets Turn South, Dragging AAPL Along
by Wes George

Abbey Joseph Cohen of Goldman Sachs, famous for her visionary anticipation of today's tech stock bull market, spooked Wall Street today by announcing that she is trimming her model portfolio's position in stocks by 5%. Apple ended slightly lower on the session.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Ms. Cohen, "reduced the amount of stocks to 65% in her model portfolio, down from 70%. She recommended that investors convert the 5% into cash, rather than invest it in bonds. Previously she hadn't recommended investors hold any cash in her portfolios."

Meanwhile, OPEC, during the second day of talks in Vienna, announced the oil cartel will support production increases, but has yet to work out the details. Crude oil prices dropped $0.70 on the news, yet the stock market didn't respond.

Apple gave back 7/16 or -0.31%, to close at 139 1/8 on volume of 1.8 million shares. It's striking how well AAPL has retained its recent gains. Long time followers of the stock note that AAPL, in the past, usually gives up most rapid gains rather quickly to consolidate at a lower level before advancing again.

The Nasdaq sold off 124 points (-2.51%) to close at 4833 on a volume of 1.48 billion shares traded for the second lightest volume of the year. Yesterday was the lowest volume of the year. Today's light volume could indicate that the sell off lacks conviction.

The Dow fell 89 points (-0.81%) to close at 10936 on volume of 950 million shares. Financial stocks were up against the trend today, perhaps because Ms. Cohen recommended them to investors today.

The S&P 500 lost 16.13 points (-1.06%) to close at 1507.73.

In Apple related businesses: ARM Holding lost 1 7/8 to close at 192 1/8. Adobe gave back 2 1/2 to close at 111 1/8. Earthlink lost 3/8 to close at 20 15/16. Macromedia lost 4 7/16 to 85 1/16. Motorola gained 1 7/8 to close at 165 3/8 dollars. IBM slipped 4 5/8 to 122 1/4.

Apple's competitors: Hewlett Packard lost 5 3/8 to close at 140 13/16. Dell gave back 2 dollars after the stock's recent run up, to close at 55 7/8. Intel gave back 6 7/8 to close at 135 13/16. Gateway continued south, down 1 3/8 to 55 7/8. Compaq got slapped down 15/16 to close at 28 3/8. Shares of Microsoft slipped 1/4 to 104 5/16.

Morgan Stanley & Co. unlocked some 2 million shares held by early investors, thus allowing them to take profit on the stock. Shares of Akamai dipped 8 13/16 to 199 7/8 dollars.

In Economic News: The consumer confidence index surprised economists by dropping to 136.7 in March for its second decline in as many months, indicating that spending on consumer goods could slack off in the US going into the summer.

According to the Wall Street Journal, "The March drop came despite a brighter assessment of current conditions. The present situation index rose slightly to 182.4 from 180.1. But another steep decline in the expectations index offset that increase. The expectations index -- a gauge of consumers' outlook of the economy over the next six months -- fell more than eight points to 106.2, the lowest reading since September and 13 points below January's reading."

Look forward to new home sales data tomorrow. Gross Domestic Product number are released on Thursday morning. Then on Friday expect personal income, personal spending, the Chicago PDI and factory orders for February to make news for the markets.

The bellwether 30-year US Treasury bond dropped 1/32 to 103 26/32. The yield, which moves inversely to the price, rose to 5.97%.

For full quotes on all the companies mentioned in this article, we have assembled this set of quotes at Yahoo! for your reference. We also have many of these same quotes reported live (20 minute delay) on our home page. For other stories regarding Apple's stock activity, visit our Apple Stock Watch Special Report.


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