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Thursday, 13 October 2011 | 21:01

DJ30 PointChange: -40.72 Level: 11478.13 NASDAQ PointChange: +15.51 Level: 2620.24 NQ100 PercentChange: +0.9 R2K PercentChange: -0.2 SP400 PercentChange: +0.1 SP500 PointChange: -3.59 Level: 1203.66 NASDAQ-Adv:1226 Dec: 1271 NYSE-Adv:1171 Dec: 1831

[BRIEFING.COM] Tech led the Nasdaq to an enviable gain, but the broad market booked a loss as bank stocks and financial services plays succumbed to aggressive selling pressure.

The mood among market participants this morning was dampened by renewed weakness among Europe's major bourses, which moved lower after Asia's major averages staged strong gains in overnight action. Worries about the quality of third quarter bank earnings also weighed on early sentiment.

JPMorgan Chase (JPM 31.23, -1.97), widely regarded as one of the best run and most fundamentally sound banks in the business, posted this morning an upside earnings surprise, but the results were helped by deterioration in the company's own debt prices. Uncertainty about what other banks and financial services firms may report took the KBW Bank Index down almost 5% and the broader financial sector more than 3% lower before losses were trimmed in afternoon trade.

Pressure eased, but didn't exactly evaporate, in afternoon action. That helped the S&P 500 climb to the neutral line after it had been down more than 1% at its session low. Resistance at the flat line kept the broad market measure in negative territory. The Dow followed suit.

The Nasdaq was more successful in its effort. In turn, it scored another gain, which is actually its seventh in eight sessions. The Nasdaq's strength was owed to tech issues, which collectively climbed 1.0% while almost every other sector failed to either logged a loss or remained mired at the neutral line. Internet search giant Google (GOOG 558.99, +10.49) provided leadership ahead of its quarterly report.

Treasuries advanced, but surrendered some of their gains as the stock market recovered into the close. Results from an auction of 30-year Bonds didn't really have an impact on trade. The auction drew a bid-to-cover of 2.94, dollar demand of $38.2 billion, and an indirect bidder participation rate of 28.7%.

As for today's data, the latest initial jobless claims tally declined by 1,000 week over week to 404,000, which is on par with the 406,000 initial claims that had been broadly expected.

The trade deficit for August came in at $45.6 billion, which is slightly less than the $46.1 billion deficit that had been generally anticipated among economists polled by

Advancing Sectors: Tech +1.0%, Telecom +0.6%
Unchanged: Utilities
Declining Sectors: Health Care -0.1%, Consumer Staples -0.1%, Consumer Discretionary -0.2%, Energy -0.3%, Materials -0.5%, Industrials -0.9%, Financials -2.4%

Source: Briefing

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