Letdowns Led the Way in April

Too many first-quarter disappointments dashed most mutual-fund investors' hopes for a profit rebound

April was a dreary month for most mutual-fund investors. Despite the better-than-expected economic news posted in March, corporate profits failed to shine. April brought first-quarter earnings disappointments from many technology bellwethers, particularly in telecom and software. Although most companies met or beat analysts' expectations, investors' hopes for a robust profit picture were dashed.

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