Apple Continues Plunge, But Slows The Descent

The markets continue to be jittery as the twin specters of a tech downturn and Mideast turmoil affecting oil supplies kept stock prices down. The good news is that the slide slowed its pace in the tech industry with the Nasdaq experiencing only a single digit fall. Thatis a good day when compared to the last two weeks. Apple continued to fall today, but the company slowed its descent as Wall Street took time to look around.

Apple sank 7/16 to close at 21 3/4 on volume of 10,666,900 shares. This is still 2 1/2 times normal volume before Apple announced its warnings earning, though once again volume is slowing. Apple announced that Mitch Mandich, Vice President of Worldwide Sales, will be retiring in December of this year. The Mac Observer covers this in a full article.

The Nasdaq fell 5.45 points (-0.16%) to close at 3355.56 on volume of 1.4 billion shares. Biotechs took some of the brunt of todayis trading as traders paused to pick up some of the stocks that have been hammered during the last two weeks. ANalysts are still coming out of the woodwork to warn that the PC industry is slowing down, and, surprise surprise, this could have a debilitating effect on parts suppliers. Yahoo managed to post a small gain of 4-1/2 to close at 85-3/4.

The Dow fell 28.11 points (-0.27%) to close at 10568.43 on volume of 718 million shares. Worry about the violence in the Mideast helped drive the price of oil up, and oil stocks benefited as well.

The S&P 500 dropped 6.96 points (-0.49%) to close at 1402.03.

In Apple related businesses: Akamai climbed 7 3/4 to close at 43 15/16 on news that the company had formed a new alliance with Novell. ANalyst Thomas Weisel also raised the stockis rating from a Buy to a Strong Buy, further boosting the stock. According to a press release from the two companies:

Novell, Inc. and Akamai Technologies, Inc. today announced a broad strategic alliance to enhance the delivery of Web content for mutual customers. As part of the agreements, Novell will integrate Akamaizer(SM) functionality into the Novell® Internet Caching System(TM) (ICS) and Novell Content Exchange solutions. Novell will provide Web content acceleration using its best-of-breed caching solutions.

As part of the alliance, Novell will also offer Akamaiis FreeFlow(SM) and FreeFlow(SM) Streaming services to its customers for the fast, reliable delivery of rich, multimedia content, while Akamai will offer the integrated Akamai/Novell solutions to its customers.

Adobe rose 2 1/16 to close at 149 11/16. Earthlink fell x to x. Motorola closed down 3/4 at 27 as worries about the chip sector continue to circulate. IBM climbed 1 15/16 to close at 117 15/16.

Appleis competitors: Dell gained 5/16 to close at 25 5/8 as investors have largely deigned not to notice the company also warned of revenue shortfalls. Ali Asadullah targeted the company in his satirical mock trial column at Upside Today for trying to slip under Wall Streetis radar, a move the company appears to have accomplished. Gateway was higher by 1.52 to close at 48. Compaq gained .47 to close at 25.48. Shares of Microsoft dropped 1 3/8 to close at 54 3/16.

For full quotes on all the companies mentioned in this article, we have assembled this set of quotes at Yahoo! for your reference. For other stories regarding Appleis stock activity, visit our Apple Stock Watch Special Report, which has been updated with all of Octoberis stories.