Slow Start To Second Half

The markets fell sharply after tech companies issued profit warnings and unemployment figures were slightly higher than expected.



The markets didn't get the second half of the year off to a flying start. All of our indexes fell sharply Thursday as the markets reacted to profit warnings from technology companies, an unexpected increase in unemployment claims, and higher oil prices. That all came coming one day after the Federal Reserve boosted interest rates by a quarter-point.

Our InformationWeek 100 index fell 8.47 points, or 2.6%, to close at 317.41, while the Nasdaq composite index fell 32.24 points, or more than 1.5%, to 2,015.55. The Dow industrials fell 101.32 points, or nearly 1%, to close at 10,334.16, while the S&P 500 fell 11.86 points, or more than 1%, to finish the day at 1,128.98.

Shares of Emulex fell nearly 20% to $11.46 after the data-storage-system maker issued a profit warning, and Yahoo shares dropped more than 5% to $34.30 after Smith Barney downgraded its stock. Intel shares lost more than 2% of their value, closing at $27.02, and Hewlett-Packard stock fell more than 2% to $20.58. The Nasdaq-100 tracking stock closed at $37.04, down 70 cents, or nearly 2%, on heavy volume of nearly 119 million shares.

On the economic front, the number of Americans filing new unemployment claims last week increased to 351,000--higher than the 343,000 economists expected--from an upwardly revised 350,000 new claims the week before. On Friday, the Labor Department issues its all-important payrolls report for June.

See the full listing of all the companies in the InformationWeek 100 and the top 5 percentage winners and losers for the last closing at informationweek.com/stocks.

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