Computer stocks lead drop in Dow


NEW YORK -- U.S. stocks fell yesterday, after declines in Asia and Europe, and a government report of unexpectedly strong growth in unemployment.

Western Digital Corp. and other computer-related shares slumped.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 101.92 to 7,581.32, after Korea's benchmark stock index fell a record 6.9 percent and Japan's Nikkei 225 plunged below 16,000 for the first time since July 1995. Rising borrowing costs in Asia may hurt demand for U.S. exports.

Western Digital fell $6.625 to $23.625 after the computer disk drive maker warned that earnings for the second quarter ending Dec. 27 would be disappointing. The company's chairman blamed Japan's Fujitsu Ltd. for pricing its rival products "at cost."

That drove other computer-related shares down. Texas Instruments Inc. fell $4.75 to $112.75; Applied Materials Inc. fell $1.1875 to $35.1875; Compaq Computer Corp. slid $1.1875 to $64.25; Dell Computer Corp. fell $2.4375 to $78.5625; and International Business Machines Corp. fell $1.5625 to $99.50. The Morgan Stanley index of high technology dropped 2.2 percent. For the week, it gained 0.8 percent.

"The impact from Asia on the earnings of U.S. multinational companies hasn't been fully discounted in the market," said John Niedenberger, a money manager at Advanced Investment Management in Pittsburgh Intel Corp. bucked the trend, rising $3.9375 to $77.4375 in trading of 39.8 million shares. It was the most-active stock in U.S. exchanges. The company told analysts it hasn't changed its optimistic long-term outlook for Southeast Asia as a growth area.

The 30-stock Dow average rose 139 points, or 1.9 percent, for the week, its first weekly advance since Oct. 10. Yesterday's loss erased almost half the week's gain. The Dow hasn't managed to close above 7,715.41, its level two weeks ago on the day before it took a one-day, 7.2 percent tumble.

Broad stock market indexes declined. The Standard & Poor's 500 index dropped 10.52 to 927.51 and the Nasdaq composite index, filled with computer-related shares, slid 21.04 to 1,602.40.

Among other broad market indexes, the Russell 2,000 index of small capitalization stocks dropped 7.61 to 435.22; the Wilshire 5,000 index, comprising stocks on the New York, American and Nasdaq stock exchanges, plunged 119.56 to 8,962.17; the American Stock Exchange composite index lost 9.44 to 678.27; and the S&P; 400 midcap index slipped 5.43 to 319.70.

About 569.9 million shares changed hands at New York Stock Exchange.

Among financial shares, Citicorp fell $2.75 to $129.125; Chase Manhattan Corp. dropped $2.625 to $117.4375; NationsBank Corp. fell 56.25 cents to $60.9375; and J.P. Morgan & Co. fell 93.75 cents to $114.75.

Pub Date: 11/08/97

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