Stocks Reverse Early Losses to End Higher

Blue chips and most tech sectors gained Monday. But semiconductor stocks sank after a negative analyst outlook on the industry

Despite losses earlier in the session, blue chips recovered to finish higher Monday. Techs, meanwhile, also bounced back despite a negative outlook for chip makers.

In contrast to recent reports that the Internet and high-tech companies are scraping bottom, Lehman Brothers analyst Dan Niles predicted more trouble, and said he expects 2001 to be the worst year ever for the semiconductor industry. Shares of chip makers posted losses including Intel Corp. (INTC ), Applied Materials Inc. (AMAT ) and Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD ).

In corporate news, Internet retailer Inc. (AMZN ) forecasted a narrower-than-expected first-quarter loss. The company expects to report first-quarter revenues of more than $695 million. Analysts had expected revenues of $669.6 million, according to research firm Thomson Financial/First Call. The pro forma net loss is expected to be 22 cents a share or less. The First Call estimate is 30 cents a share. Shares of ended up more than 2%.

Amid a vacuum of economic news to guide trading, many investors were focused on the week ahead. Mobile phone maker Motorola Inc. (MOT ) reports Tuesday, with Internet media giant Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO ) scheduled to report Wednesday.

On Monday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 54.06 points, or 0.55%, to 9,845.15. The Nasdaq composite added 25.36 points, or 1.47%, to 1,745.72. The broader S&P 500 ended up 9.16 points, or 0.81%, to 1,137.59.

Treasury Market

Treasuries ended lower, amid earlier strength in equities. Looking ahead to the rest of the week, the market will be watching data on retail sales and the Producer Price Index.

Stocks in the News

General Electric's (GE ) NBC unit on Monday pulled the plug on NBCi as the beleaguered online media company became the latest casualty of the Internet media downturn.

Northwest Airlines Corp. (NWAC ) and its mechanics union said they reached a tentative agreement early on Monday to settle a 4-year-old dispute over pay and benefits, averting a potential strike that could have begun on May 11, according to press reports.

The bad blood between Pacific Gas & Electric Co., California's largest utility, and state officials continued unabated over the weekend as the utility defended its award of $50 million in employee bonuses a day before declaring bankruptcy. PG&E is a unit of parent PG&E Corp. (PCG ).

Several consumer groups said on Sunday they had joined together to sue pharmaceutical giant Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. (BMY ). The groups allege the company used illegal tactics to maintain a monopoly on a widely prescribed anti-anxiety drug.

World Markets

European markets finished higher. In London, the Financial Times-Stock Exchange 100 index ended up 61.80 points, or 1.10%, to 5,663.30. In Germany, the DAX Index gained 79.96 points, or 1.40%, to 5,778.84. In France, the CAC 40 added 43.51 points, or 0.85%, to 5,183.22.

In Asia, the markets ended lower. The Nikkei fell 542 points, or 4.05%, to 12,841.76. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng ended down 184.51 points, or 1.49%, to 12,202.10.

By Heesun Wee in New York

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