November 20, 2009 / 4:39 PM / 9 years ago

US STOCKS-Wall St dragged lower after Dell, Horton results

* Dell shares fall after Q3 sales miss view

* D.R. Horton posts Q4 loss, shares drop 11 pct

* Indexes down: Dow 0.6 pct, S&P 0.7 pct, Nasdaq 0.9 pct

* For up-to-the-minute market news, click [STXNEWS/US]

(Updates to late morning, changes quote, byline)

By Rodrigo Campos

NEW YORK, Nov 20 (Reuters) - Worst-than-expected results from computer maker Dell and homebuilder D.R. Horton helped push stocks lower on Friday in the third straight negative session for Wall Street.

Dell Inc DELL.O slid 9 percent to $14.44 a day after it reported a 54 percent drop in third-quarter profit and sales that missed estimates. [ID:nN19191886]

Investors have been watching the technology sector closely after a big run-up, with the S&P information technology sector .GSPT soaring more than 70 percent from its March lows. On Thursday, tech shares were pummeled after a bearish analyst comment on semiconductors.

“On the back of very weak numbers from Dell, profits have been taken on tech stocks,” said Chad Morganlander, portfolio manager at Stifel Nicolaus & Co in Florham Park, New Jersey.

D.R. Horton Inc (DHI.N) tumbled 13 percent to $10.66 after the No. 2 U.S. homebuilder reported a fourth-quarter loss that was wider than expected and said market conditions were “still challenging.” [ID:nBNG484261]

The results came in the same week that data showed new housing starts fell to their lowest level in six months in October. [ID:nN1738618] The Dow Jones home construction index .DJUSHB declined nearly 5 percent, the largest daily decline this month.

The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI lost 57.36 points, or 0.56 percent, to 10,275.08. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index .SPX fell 7.60 points, or 0.69 percent, to 1,087.30. The Nasdaq Composite Index .IXIC dropped 19.14 points, or 0.89 percent, to 2,137.68.

Friday marks the third straight day of declines, as investors reassess the global economic outlook and see few reasons to make big bets after the market has jumped 20 percent this year.

“People are assessing risk and what they want to hold to on into year end,” said Frank Lesh, futures analyst and broker at FuturePath Trading LLC in Chicago.

December crude oil futures CLc1 fell 1 percent to $76.65 a barrel, hurt by a stronger U.S. dollar. Stocks in the energy sector dipped, with the S&P energy index .GSPE off 1,3 percent.

Dow component General Electric Co (GE.N) shed 1.5 percent to $15.53 after the Financial Times reported GE and Vivendi SA (VIV.PA) were at least $1 billion apart in their valuation of Vivendi’s stake in NBC Universal, dampening hopes of a swift sale. [ID:nLK334569]

Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N) declined 1.3 percent to $170.62 after the Wall Street Journal reported large shareholders have asked the investment bank — on track to pay out the biggest bonuses in its history — to pass more profits to investors. [ID:nBNG411172].

Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe

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