Sharp declines in Intel, Yahoo lead tech stocks lower

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Sharp declines in technology bellwethers Intel and Yahoo dragged down the tech laden Nasdaq Composite Index Wednesday. The index finished at 2279.64, a drop of 23.05 points or 1 percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 Index ended the day with losses of 0.38 percent and 0.39 percent to end at 10,854.86 and 1277.93 respectively.

The world's largest chipmaker fell nearly $3 or 11 percent to $22.60. Internet software giant Yahoo was down nearly $5 to close at $35.18 a loss of nearly 12 percent. Analysts blamed disappointing sales forecasts for the first quarter for today's selloff.

A number of research firms including Citigroup and UBS handed downgrades to Intel stock today. This followed the company's failure to meet analysts’ and its own expectations for revenue and earnings during its fourth quarter earnings release yesterday.

Thomas Thornhill lowered his stock rating to "neutral" and commented on Intel's competitive situation with arch-rival Advanced Micro Devices. “AMD is likely to remain a serious competitor to Intel and Intel’s longer-term risk profile is now higher than we previously believed”