X Hype Seems To Wane, Apple Sheds 5%

The day started off with the Dow, Nasdaq, and S&P all in positive territory. While the Dow and S&P both kept their feet firmly planted in the black, the Nasdaq ended up giving back its gains including Apple. The Dow opened up almost 100 points higher, and continued its rise for the first couple of hours. The index eventually leveled off as strength in the Blue Chips held up. The Nasdaq was weighed down by the chip sector and some cautious comments from Cisco as we approach the end of the 1st quarter. Losses on the Nasdaq were held to a minimum, but the problem was that the low volumes traded suggest there is little conviction in either the Dowis rise or the Nasdaq holding steady. According to a CBS Marketwatch report:

"We were due for a little bounce in the Dow Industrials. Just as we canit go straight up, we canit go straight down," remarked Peter Boockvar, equity strategist at Miller Tabak & Co.

While a pullback in the semis hurt the tech sector Monday, Boockvar noted that the group was behind the Nasdaqis strength late last week.

"It looks like the averages may settle around these levels for the short term. But itis impossible to call a long-term bottom. Investors may need to re-evaluate things as the pre-announcement season [unfolds]," Boockvar added. "The market will remain on edge."

Looking for a bottom, the eternal quest for everyone.

Tech stocks ended the day mixed, and that includes the stocks we track in the Stock Watch. The box makers were all down, with the exception of HP and IBM which both have their roots in other sectors. Microsoft also closed lower, despite releasing Beta 2 of Windows XP. Coincidentally, this was 2 days after Appleis next generation OS was released, though there is no direct evidence that MS was attempting to steal media attention from Apple. The company has also announced a really "innovative" new feature for Windows XP. The company says that they will be integrating CD-RW drives so that they show up just like any other drive, allowing you to drop files into them for burning later. This is so innovative that Apple introduced the same technology at MACWORLD San Francisco. Microsoft also announced MP3 file management software that will be included in Windows XP. No doubt, the product will be called iTunes XP.

Apple released Mac OS X on Saturday, and despite some mainstream media coverage that day, there was little coverage today. One exception to this would be The Motley Fool who recapped Mac OS X issues as they relate to Apple investors. Upside Today also had a sensational piece for Mac OS X in their "On Trial" series where the magazine asks readers to vote on whether or not Mac OS X is "half-baked." Hooray. The Mac Web has released a ton of coverage, however, and thatis a lot when we are talking bout a ton of HTML. Mac OS X users can get what they need from the many Mac sites.

Apple traded lower today on heavy volume. The stock opened higher and stated that way throughout the morning session, but once the afternoon rolled around, AAPL headed south to stay. The dayis range was 21.13 - 23.75 with Apple bouncing off of the dayis lows in the last hour of trading. Apple shed more than 5% of its value. Apple began trading in decimals today as the Nasdaq continues its efforts to bring all of its stocks into the 20th Century. Note the irony that its actually the 21st century.

Apple closed at 21.78, a loss of 1.2200 (-5.30%), on heavy volume of 13,116,100 shares trading hands.

The Nasdaq closed at 1918.49, a loss of 10.19 (-0.53%), on volume of 1,721,452,000 shares trading hands.

The Dow closed at 9687.53, up 182.75 (+1.92%), on volume of 1,119,259,000 shares trading hands.

The S&P 500 closed 1152.69, up 12.86 (+1.13%).

Akamai closed at 9 13/32, a gain of 7/8 (+10.26%), on volume of 2,199,300 shares trading hands. Apple is a large shareholder of Akamai.

Adobe closed at 33.59, down 2.0975 (-5.88%), on volume of 4,303,100 shares trading hands.

IBM closed at 95.40, a gain of 1.89 (+2.02%), on light volume of 8,581,200 shares trading hands.

Motorola announced 4,000 more job cuts in their networking sector. MOT closed at 15.99, a gain of 0.31 (+1.98%), on volume of 13,511,800 shares trading hands.

Earthlink continued its steady gains today by closing at 12 1/16, a gain of 1/16 (+0.52%), on volume of 3,178,100 shares trading hands.

Gateway closed at 16.97, down 0.70 (-3.96%), on light volume of 1,642,800 shares trading hands.

Dell closed at 25 11/16, a loss of 1 3/4 (-6.38%), on strong volume of 42,130,200 shares trading hands.

Intel closed at 28 5/16, a gain of 1/2 (-1.74%), on strong volume of 64,434,700 shares trading hands.

Microsoft closed at 56 1/16, a loss of 1/2 (-0.88%), on light volume of 31,559,400 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.