The Russell 2000 Index (RTY) fell for the first time this week, losing 0.1 percent to 712.60 at 10:53 a.m. in New York. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index (SPX), whose members have a median market value 22 times larger than the Russell 2000's, declined 0.1 percent. The measures have lost 7 percent and 6.9 percent, respectively, this year.
Education shares rallied after leading Democrats in Congress proposed increasing the amount college students can borrow from U.S. government-guaranteed loan programs to pay for higher education. Apollo Group Inc. (APOL) advanced 3.1 percent to $47.93. Corinthian Colleges Inc. (COCO) jumped 18 percent to $9.29. DeVry Inc. (DV) added 5.4 percent to $46.95. ITT Educational Services Inc. (ESI) climbed 11 percent to $58.69. Strayer Education Inc. (STRA) rose 5.2 percent to $169.82.
DemandTec Inc. (DMAN US) dropped the most since its Aug. 8 initial public offering, slumping 29 percent to $7.79. The provider of consumer demand management software reported 20 percent less fourth-quarter profit than analysts estimated, according to Bloomberg data. William Blair & Co. analyst Laura Lederman cut the stock's rating to ``market perform'' from ``outperform.''
Georgia Gulf Corp. (GGC) slipped 6.3 percent to $6.52, the lowest since March 20. The maker of chemicals and plastics was cut to ``equal weight'' from ``underweight'' at Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. on expectations that climbing energy prices will cut profits.
Myers Industries Inc. (MYE) slipped the most since Feb. 29, declining 6.6 percent to $12.70. The maker of plastic and rubber products said GS Capital Partners scrapped plans to buy the company.
Orthofix International NV (OFIX) lost the most since Feb. 22, retreating 13 percent to $34.59. The maker of bone-repair and sports medicine products said Chief Financial Officer Timothy R. Adams resigned.
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