TECH STOCKS: Apple, Facebook Weigh On Techs; Google Up
02/21/2013| 05:02pm US/Eastern
By Benjamin Pimentel, MarketWatch
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Technology stocks dropped Thursday, adding to the previous day's losses, as large-cap players such as Facebook Inc., Oracle Corp. and Intel Corp. came under pressure.
Apple Inc. (>> Apple Inc.) shares dropped $2.79 to close at $446.06 as hedge-fund giant David Einhorn held a conference call to discuss the company. Einhorn is waging a campaign to press the company to consider issuing special preferred stock.
In an interview with AllThingsD, Einhorn said his proposal offers a "win-win" for both Apple and its shareholders. "We have a solution that allows shareholders to see that value and Apple to keep that cash," he added.
Apple's retreat set the tone for a downbeat trading session, which saw the Nasdaq Composite Index (RIXF) drop almost 33 points, or 1%, to close at 3,131.49.
The Morgan Stanley High-Tech Index (MSH) gave up 1.2%, while the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX) fell 1.8%.
The tech sector retreat followed Wednesday's broader market selloff sparked by investor concern over the Federal Open Market Committee's January meeting minutes that revealed differences over monetary policy.
Among large-cap tech names, Oracle (>> Oracle Corporation), SAP AG (>> SAP AG), Intel (>> Intel Corporation), Cisco Systems Inc. (>> Cisco Systems, Inc.) and Microsoft Corp. (>> Microsoft Corporation) all closed in the red.
Facebook (>> Facebook Inc) fell more than 4% to end the day at $27.28.
However, Hewlett-Packard (>> Hewlett-Packard Company) shares rose 2.4% to close at $17.10 ahead of the Palo Alto, Calif.-based company's fiscal first-quarter report.
But shares of VeriFone Systems Inc. (>> VeriFone Systems Inc) were slammed, plummeting almost 43% to close at $18.24 after the company drastically cut its estimates for its fiscal first quarter.
On the upside, Google Inc. (>> Google Inc) shares rose $3.07 to close at $795.53 The Internet powerhouse's stock hit an all-time high recently, rising above $800 for the first time in its history.
And the stock will probably go higher, Bernstein Research analyst Carlos Kirjner argued in a note, raising the price target to $1,000. "We believe mass adoption of smartphones, tablets and the mobile Web is a large value-creation opportunity for Google," Kirjner wrote.
Groupon Inc. (>> Groupon Inc) rose almost 4% on a Piper Jaffray upgrade.
Shares of Home Away Inc. (>> HomeAway, Inc.) rallied more than 13% after the company posted upbeat results.
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Stocks mentioned in the article : Apple Inc.
, VeriFone Systems Inc
, Oracle Corporation
, SAP AG
, HomeAway, Inc.
, Cisco Systems, Inc.
, Facebook Inc
, Google Inc
, Groupon Inc
, Hewlett-Packard Company
, Intel Corporation
, Microsoft Corporation