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Markets & Stocks
Dow attacks 10,000 again
March 15, 1999: 11:44 a.m. ET

Broad buying picks up and brings blue chips ever closer to milestone
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NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Buying picked up on Wall Street and pushed U.S. stocks modestly higher at midday Monday, with investors finding inspiration in a slew of heavy-duty mergers, but treading with a bit of trepidation with the Dow so close to 10,000.
     Shortly before 11:30 a.m. the Dow Jones industrial average rose 61.33 points to 9,937.68, shrinking the distance to the five-figure milestone. Advancing stocks outpaced declines 1,421 to 1,198 as 264 million shares changed hands on the New York Stock Exchange.
     The Nasdaq Composite gained 32.01, or 1.3 percent, to 2,413.54 and the S&P 500 index was 9.19 points higher at 1,303.78. (Click here for a look at today's CNNfn market movers)
     The bond market was mostly lower, weighed down by weakness in the dollar, which dropped to its lowest level against the Japanese yen in a month. The benchmark 30-year Treasury bond was down 1/32 of a point in price for a yield of 5.52 percent.
     The dollar fell against the yen as investors shifted money back into Japan ahead of the country's fiscal year end at the end of March. The dollar also moved lower against the euro, pressured by some strong German economic data.
    
Merger machine churns again

     Much of the stock market's Monday performance was driven by a heavy dose of alliances and mergers in industries as varied as finance, chemicals and natural gas.
     News that BankBoston (BKB) and Fleet Financial Group (FLT) are joining forces in a $16 billion deal sent BankBoston shares up 1-5/16 to 48-1/4 but the stock of Fleet fell 1-3/4 to 43. The news got mixed reception among Wall Street experts: NationsBanc Montgomery Securities upgraded both BankBoston and Fleet to "buy" from "hold," but PaineWebber downgraded BankBoston to "neutral" from "buy."
     Meanwhile, in another niche of the financial services industry, brokerage Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ) shot up 3-3/8 to 67-3/8 after the company's online arm was ranked No. 1 in a survey by Barron's this weekend. Morgan Stanley Dean Witter 's (MWD) Discover online brokerage came in second, and the company's stock inched up 3/8 to 101-1/2.
     Elsewhere in the day's news, shares of Dow component DuPont (DD) slipped 1-9/16 to 56-3/16 on news the chemical giant is paying $7.7 billion for seeds producer Pioneer Hi-Bred International (PHB). Pioneer's stock gained 3-7/16, or more than 10 percent, to 37-3/4.
     In the natural-gas business, shares of El Paso Energy (EPG) fell 1-7/8 to 32-13/16 following news the company is buying Sonat (SNT) in a $6 billion stock and debt deal. Trading in Sonat's stock was delayed.
     Meanwhile, in the high-tech sector, shares of Netscape (NSCP) climbed 4-13/16 to 89-11/16 after the Justice Department Friday cleared the way for the browser-maker/Web portal to merge with online service giant America Online (AOL). AOL's stock gained 3-13/16 to 99-15/16.
     And shares of CMGI (CMGI), which is itself a major player in the ongoing merger of Lycos (LCOS) and USA Networks (USAI), shot up 18-3/4 to 182-3/4 on news the company will replace Netscape in the Nasdaq 100 index.
    
Transports head to higher ground

     Transportation stocks perked up as well, after UAL (UAL), the parent of the nation's largest carrier, United Airlines, said it will beat earnings expectations for both the first quarter and the entire year, due partly to last month's pilot unrest at rival AMR 's (AMR) American Airlines.
     UAL's shares rallied 4-7/16 to 71-1/2, the biggest net gainer on the NYSE.
     Shares of AMR rose 2-13/16 to 60-13/16 and Delta Air Lines (DAL), the third-largest airline, shot up 2-3/4 to 66-3/4.
     The Dow transports index soared 87.00 points, or 2.7 percent, to 3,354.51.
    
Techs join the rally

     Technology stocks, which last week lagged the broader market and contributed to the Dow's interrupted climb toward 10,000, found new buyers Monday and helped the rest of Wall Street work its way to higher ground.
     Among the sector's leaders, Dow component IBM (IBM) rose 1-7/8 to 179-7/8, and fellow Dow 30 member Hewlett Packard (HWP) advanced 1-15/16 to 70-15/16.
     HP is part of a broad alliance that includes giants Microsoft (MSFT), Intel (INTC) and Canada's Nortel (NT) and is expected to be announced this afternoon. The group will work to create telecommunications networking equipment products in direct competition with Cisco Systems (CSCO) and other established players in the field.
     Microsoft's stock rose 2-1/16 to 162-1/4, Intel eased 5/16 to 117-15/16 and Nortel's American depositary receipts rose 3/4 to 59-9/16. Back to top
     -- by staff writer Malina Poshtova Zang

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Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2018 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2018. All rights reserved. Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2018 and/or its affiliates.

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2018 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2018. All rights reserved. Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2018 and/or its affiliates.