Nervous Pessimism Reigns on Wall Street, Apple’s Stock Sheds 5.0%

PC stocks took it on the chin again today and this time both the Nasdaq and the Dow converged to the downside as investors worry about high oil prices, a weak Euro and more profit warnings.

The talk on Wall Street is for another tough week ahead as negative pre-earnings announcements feed fears that the slowing economy may hurt corporate earnings going forward. Next Friday is also a triple witching day when options, index options and futures contracts all expire together possibly instigating brief volatility.

Moodyis Investors Services downgraded Japanese yen-based government bonds. "The domestic currency rating for state debt in the worldis second-biggest economy was cut to "Aa2" from "Aa1," with an unchanged negative outlook", said the Moody statement. The economies of Taiwan and Korea also are in a funk and some analysts are forecasting monetary turbulence in Asia this autumn or winter.

The Goldman Sachs Computer Hardware Index ($GHA) fell 2.53% today and about 4% for the week.

Apple sank 3 1/8 to close at 58 7/8 on low volume of 3.4 million shares. Although AAPL lost almost 4% for the week, it fared much better than most PC stocks this week. Dell lost nearly 11% and Gatewayis stock fell 8%.

The Nasdaq declined 119 points (-2.90%) to close at the session low of 3979 on volume of 1.5 billion shares. The Philadelphia Semiconductor Index was down 4.96% for the day and 8.75% for the week., which help put the Nasdaq in the red by 5.75% for the week.

The Dow fell 38 points (-0.34%) to close at 11221 on volume of 963 million shares. The Dow Jones Utility Index hit another record high today and many defensive old economy stocks, such as retail and food stocks, were stronger as well.

The S&P 500 dropped 7.87 points (-0.52%) to close at 1494.64.

In Apple related businesses: Akamai shed 2 1/2 to 67 1/2. Adobe fell 3 1/16 to 133 7/8, Adobe will announce quarterly earnings next Thursday. Earthlink slipped back by 3/8 to 11 3/8. Motorola lost 1 9/16 to 33 15/16. IBM dropped 3 13/16 to 129 9/16.

Appleis competitors: Gateway was lower by 2.32 to 62.58. Intel fell 1 7/8 to 65 9/16. For the week, Intelis stock shed about 13% of its value.

Dell lost 1 5/16 to 38 7/8. Banc of America Securities said that they are "increasingly confident in Dell’s quarter", since the overall PC demand seems OK. "More broadly, we still can’t find evidence of a sudden slowdown in end PC demand. We’re increasingly confident any negative signals emanating from component supply chain reflect PC vendors’ over-ordering in last quarter’s shortage environment."

The Supreme Court took no action on the Microsoft appeal, leaving open the question of when it will decide whether to hear a direct appeal of the case from the trial court. Shares of Microsoft traded lower by 3/4 to 69 5/16. See the full Mac Observer story.

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.

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