The Nasdaq Composite Index and EBN 100 Stock Index gained modest ground Thursday, just a day after the two dropped 2.5% and 4.2%, respectively, as investors pondered the repercussions of the collapse of Enron's merger with Dynegy. Dynegy called off the merger following announcements from credit-ratings agencies downgrading Enron's debt to junk status. The sudden erosion of the company caused Enron to pull the plug on its DRAM risk-management program that it launched earlier this year.
A 47% jump to close at $1.13 on Thursday made SigmaTron International , an independent provider of EMS services, the lead composite gainer. Overall, the EBN
100 Stock Index peaked early in the week, lost some ground on Wednesday, then stage a rebound on Thursday.
Chipmaker shares rose on Thursday amid a broad rally based on a growing expectation for another Fed rate cut early in December. Altera rose 7.5% on Thursday to $23.47 after reaffirming its forecast for a fourth-quarter decline that could be as much as 10 % from third-quarter levels.
Merix and AVX shares posted some of the biggest gains in the components sector, along with Vishay and Kemet.
A top-tier gainer for the week, Avnet, through its Avnet Enterprise Solutions unit, unveiled Storage Maximizer on Monday. It's a just-in-time program designed to help companies manage the entire lifecycle of their dynamic enterprise storage environment.
Flextronics and SigmaTron headed up the gainers among EMS providers. In its mid-quarter outlook on Tuesday, Flextronics told analysts its financial targets would remain the same for its next two quarters and that the business environment seemed stable.