PowerSchool Offers Morning Boost, But Apple Closes Lower

The Nasdaq was in rally mode this morning as both Nasdaq futures (before the bell) and the Nasdaq itself (after the opening bell) traded higher. A rebound in the Nikkei and easing fears that a banking crisis in Japan would seriously impact US financials helped spur the rally, but a new earnings warning from Intuit quickly put the breaks on a tech rally. Intuit warned for the 3rd quarter, but said the current quarter was solid. Sales of QuickBooks are trending lower than expected. Perhaps the company, whose Chairman sits on Appleis Board, should offer a Mac version of the financial software? Intuit closed lower on the news at 29 13/16, down 12 7/16 (-29.44%), on almost 14 times normal volume of 44,302,000 shares trading hands. Ouch.

The Dow also opened higher, but unlike the Nasdaq, managed to stay in positive territory for the whole session. The Dow closed over the psychologically important 10,000 mark, and that bodes well for investor moods if the index can hold that level. There was lots of talk that we may have seen what is called capitulation selling, or selling that occurs when investors throw up their hands, give up, and say "Iim outta here." Capitulation selling is often cited as a sign of a bottom, but analysts are still mixed on whether we have actually reached a bottom. After the bell, various investment houses were issuing a mix of bearish and bullish projections.

The Nasdaq closed below 2,000 again, and threatened to flirt with its two year intra-day low of 1922 and change, set yesterday. Volume for the Nasdaq was moderately lower than normal, with just under 2 billion shares trading hands. Dow volume was strong with 1.3 billion shares seeing movement. Tech stocks ended the day mixed, with the stocks we track in the Stock Watch closely mirroring that result. The hardware stocks that saw gains yesterday all saw red today.

Apple opened higher in the morning session, but quickly followed other hardware stocks south after Intuitis earning warning. Appleis early morning gains were powered, in part, by yesterdayis news of Apple buying PowerSchool, a company in the news of offering student/teacher data management solutions. The move is being seen as a positive one for the Cupertino based company to help them regain market share in the education market. That news was not able to keep AAPL in positive territory, however, and by 11:15 AM, the stock headed below yesterdayis close, and, after coming back up for air a couple of time, stayed that way. The stock closed under 20, with a range of 19 7/8 - 21 3/8. Volume was the strongest it has been in weeks with more than 9 million shares trading hands.

The Mac Observer broke the news of four more cities that have been slated by Apple to include new retail brick & mortar stores. Washington, DC, Atlanta, Dallas and Miami are all expected to have stores opened in upscale shopping centers. TMO reporter Tom Gray spoke to people who had been interviewed for possible positions at the retail locations.

Apple closed at 19 11/16, a loss of 3/4 (-3.67%), on strong volume of 9,452,000 shares trading hands.

The Nasdaq closed at 1940.71, down 31.38 (-1.59%), on volume of 1,965,858,000 shares trading hands.

The Dow closed at 10028.55, a gain of 55.09 (+0.55%), on volume of 1,229,169,000 shares trading hands.

The S&P 500 closed at 1173.42, a gain of 6.71 (+0.58%).

Akamai continues to make deals and announce new ventures, but despite their efforts at presenting a growing business, the stock continues to get pounded into the ground. The stock closed at 9 5/16, a loss of 1 15/16 (-17.22%), on volume of 2,859,400 shares trading hands. Apple is a large shareholder of Akamai.

Adobe beat estimates today, but lowered guidance for the current quarter. ADBE closed at 25, down 1 1/8 (-4.31%), on light volume of 4,504,900 shares trading hands.

IBM closed higher at 95.56, a gain of 0.60 (+0.63%), on volume of 8,419,000 shares trading hands.

Motorola closed at 14.41, a loss of 8 cents (-0.55%), on volume of 11,859,100 shares trading hands.

Earthlink closed higher at 10 7/16, a gain of 9/16 (+5.70%), on volume of 2,900,300 shares trading hands.

Gateway closed at 14.91, a loss of 1.18 (-7.33%), erasing several times over yesterdayis gains, on light volume of 3,375,100 shares trading hands.

Dell too closed 24 3/16, a loss of 3/16 (-0.77%), on light volume of 25,642,600 shares trading hands.

Hewlett Packard closed at 30.70, a loss of 0.25 (-0.81%), on light volume of 5,062,700 shares trading hands.

Intel closed 28 7/16, down 5/8 (-2.15%), on light volume of 40,747,400 shares trading hands.

Microsoft closed at 53 11/16, a loss of 5/16 (-0.58%), on light volume of 35,809,200 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.