Option Investor
Market Wrap

Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas

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        12-24-98         High     Low     Volume   Advances Decline
DOW     9217.99 + 15.96 9245.54  9178.60  349,586k  1,471   1,298
Nasdaq  2163.03 -  9.51 2171.30  2162.67  448,316k  1,983   1,738
S&P-100  608.91 -  1.57  611.20   608.38   Totals   3,454   3,036
S&P-500 1226.27 -  2.27 1229.72  1224.85            57.7%   57.2%
$RUT     405.56 +  0.77  405.57   404.30
$TRAN   3044.08 - 10.51 3063.41  3044.08 
VIX       22.04 +  2.70   22.04    20.19 

Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas

The shortened market session today was a yawner. With traders already home for the holidays the very low volume of 249 million shares was listless. The Nasdaq pulled back some from its string of new highs. But even that -9.50 of profit taking was only a statistic and not a preview of things to come.

The Dow was up early but faded to only +16 as traders took cash off the table before the long weekend. Some traders will not be back until January so it could be a very long weekend for some.

IBM continued to set new highs adding +2.94. Microsoft was upgraded by one analyst to a price target of $200-210 but gave up -1.81 on profit taking. MSFT is up +30% since the trial started so it does not look like traders are concerned.

The Internets suffered the most from profit taking today BUT in terms on the recent gains, it will not even be noticed. YHOO -2.88, AMZN -.19, CMGI -1.44. Broadcom (BRCM) added +1.38 and INKT +4.75!

Internet America (GEEK), an Internet service provider, rose +13 to to $44, as the big Internet gainer for the day.

Just to prove that there must be some semblance of value to backup the high Internet prices, UBID which had gained almost +$100 this week dropped -$66.38 and obscure MZON fell -26.50 to $29.50 after it rocketed up over $50 on Wednesday after announcing a new website.

AOL, after trading down -2.50 on profit taking midday, came back to close at -1.38 on volume of 7 million shares. The second most active on the NYSE. Two days now AOL has failed to give ground after the +21 gain on Tuesday. When the fund managers come back to work on Monday I expect AOL to take off again as the index funds start accumulating shares.

The Russell-2000 gained marginally today at +.77 but we have now been over 400 for two days. The Santa Claus rally is typically most felt in the small caps and they appear poised to bolt after Santa's visit.

A reminder, there will not be any newsletter tonight for obvious reasons. Some readers are still asking??

Merry Christmas

Jim Brown

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