Market Rally Boosts Apple, But Keeps The Stock Under 20

The markets rallied today in an attempt to shake off the last few days of losses. Gains were modest by the time all was said and done, however, as a late afternoon round of profit taking eroded the dayis highs. Selling on the gains isnit all that bad when taken together with the fact that the rally was sparked in part by a little "buy on the dip" action. The losses that had piled up in the last few days of selling apparently reached an attractive level with many investors. From a Reuters report:

"A fair amount of portfolio managers missed the big iupi move," said Seth Tobias, who helps manage $500 million in hedge funds at Circle T Partners. "Now we have prices at which weire willing to step up to the plate and commit capital. Weive been adding on weakness."

Taking a slightly less optimistic view is Bill Meehan, quoted by CBS Marketwatch:

"Itis mostly just a technical bounce following a rotten last couple of days," said Bill Meehan, investment strategist with Cantor Fitzgerald. "Itis also the last day of the month, so the portfolio managers are doing a little window dressing, or making purchases before they send out their end-of month positions and performance numbers."

From another CBS Marketwatch report:

"Until better fundamentals kick in, tech rallies wonit last for long. But we will get many tradable rallies and I donit think weill be driven to new lows," said Barry Hyman, chief investment strategist at Ehrenkrantz King Nussbaum.

Volume in the rally was still below the average volume of only 2-3 months ago, but much stronger than the average during the last 4 weeks. Healthy volume in a rally is considered positive. The Nasdaq traded 1.8 billion shares and the Dow traded 1.2 billion shares.

Weire happy to report that Apple enjoyed the rally too. The stock traded just shy of average volume, and closed higher by 17 cents. That was not enough to bump the stock back over that psychologically important level of 20, but it took to within a nickel. The stock started the day down some 20 cents, but quickly joined the rest of the tech sector in an upward push. It traded in a couple of plateau ranges, briefly plunging back to the starting level in an afternoon dip before rising to the dayis highs in the afternoon. A late afternoon sell off sliced 15 cents off of those highs. AAPL traded in a range of 19.49 - 20.24. Today marked only the 5th gain in May for the stock.

Apple closed at 19.95, up 0.17 (+0.86%), on volume of 7,909,00 shares trading hands.

The Nasdaq closed at 2110.49 +25.99 (+1.25%), on volume of 1,833,897,000 shares trading hands.

The Dow closed at 10911.94, up 39.30 (+0.36%), on volume of 1,226,634,000 shares trading hands.

The S&P 500 closed at 1255.82, up 7.74 (+0.62%).

Adobe closed at 39.77, a loss of 0.35 (-0.87%), on light volume of 3,634,100 shares trading hands.

Akamai closed at 10.33, up 0.28 (+2.79%), on light volume of 2,214,300 shares trading hands. Apple is a large shareholder of Akamai.

Earthlink is the subject of buyout rumors again in the form of Terra Lycos. ELNK closed at 13.18, a strong gain of 1.04 (+8.57%), on strong volume of 3,273,300 shares trading hands.

IBM closed at 111.80, down 0.85 (-0.75%), on light volume of 6,757,600 shares trading hands.

Macromediais closed at 22.28, up 9 cents9 (+0.41%), on strong volume of 1,529,000 shares trading hands.

Motorola closed at 14.70, up 0.60 (+4.26%), on light volume of 8,412,400 shares trading hands.

Dell closed at 24.36down a nickel (-0.20%), on very light volume of 24,449,900 shares trading hands.

Gateway is putting a brave face on its price war, going so far as to claim that they *might* have gained some market share in the last, though "itis hard to verify." Thatis kind of funny. GTW closed at 16.70, down 4 cents (-0.24%), on strong volume of 3,037,500 shares trading hands.

Intel closed at 27.01, a loss of 0.41 (+1.54%), on light volume of 38,765,000 shares trading hands.

Microsoft rolled out Office XP today, but no one seemed to care all that much. Joe Bousquin of is bullish on the company and its stock (an interesting read). MSFT closed at 69.18, down a penny (-0.01%), on light volume of 35,343,400 shares trading hands.

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 updated Apple Stock Watch Special Report. You can also check out our Apple Financial Boards, a new moderated forum for Apple Investors and people who are interested in Appleis financial dealings.