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by 3/5/2001 12:22 PM
Stocks quoted in this article:
United Parcel Service (UPS 57.17) said late last night that it plans to acquire shipping and packaging company Mail Boxes Etc. for an undisclosed cash sum. UPS officials said they want the purchase to be completed as soon as possible. UPS said the transaction will help expand its foothold in the e-commerce, financial services, and small business milieus.

Mail Boxes Etc. is a division of US Office Products (OFIS - 0.49), which is trading 40 percent lower today. UPS is trading marginally higher on the news. The stock still remains below all of its significant moving-average trendlines.
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by 3/5/2001 12:15 PM
Stocks quoted in this article:
The mechanics union of Northwest Airlines (NWAC 22-1/4) said today it plans to begin a strike on March 12 if demands are not met at a meeting with airline officials on March 7 (Wednesday). Officials at NWAC noted that President Bush has said he will appoint an emergency board that could postpone a stock for up to two months if an agreement is not reached at the scheduled meeting. Officials also said the airline will continue to operate its full schedule regardless of the strike threats.

NWAC shares are hovering just around the breakeven mark. For the past two sessions, the equity has been pinned beneath support at its descending 20-day trendline, which stands around the 22-1/2 level. The security has not closed above both its 10-day and 20-day moving averages simultaneously since January 8.
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by 3/5/2001 12:09 PM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Engelhard (EC 25.48) is enjoying a nice boost today following an upgrade by Lehman Brothers from a "market perform" rating to a "strong buy" rating. A developer of technology-based performance products and engineer materials for a wide rage of industrial customers, EC has been on a steady uptrend since the mid-December and has gained nearly 30 percent since the beginning of the year. The stock is currently trading at levels it has not seen since May 1996. In spite of this steady upward movement, investors are growing increasingly pessimistic on the stock, as the number of shorted shares has jumped by 79 percent from the last reporting period.
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by 3/5/2001 11:59 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Online auctioneer eBay (EBAY 38-7/16) is rising in late-morning trading today after it was reported that the firm settled its lawsuit with competitor Bidder's Edge, which had been featuring EBAY merchandise on its site. Bidder's Edge will stop this process and will also pay EBAY an undisclosed sum. In unrelated news, it hit the wires shortly after the opening bell that EBAY has established a software agreement with Rational Software (RATL 32-1/2).

One of only a handful of Internet names to actually report profitable earnings, EBAY has managed to avoid single-digit territory, although it does remain almost 70 percent off its all-time high reached last March. The stock continues to trend below all of its significant moving-average trendlines.

On the options front, EBAY faces minor out-of-the-money call open interest at the 45 strike in both the March and April series. On the put side, the March 40 and 45 strikes are both home to heavy in-the-money put open interest, with 5,788 and 6,957 open contracts, respectively. Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) for EBAY currently stands at 1.04, its highest reading over the past 12 months. This indicates a large degree of pessimism from the speculative crowd. <
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by 3/5/2001 11:26 AM
Stocks quoted in this article:
Despite earnings warnings from two semiconductor companies this morning and a group downgrade of 12 semiconductor names from a major brokerage, the PHLX Semiconductor Index (SOX 616.04) is trading up almost six percent after the first two hours of trading, today. This could be interpreted to mean that much of the bad news was already priced into the shares of the chipmaking companies.

For more information about the current state of the SOX please visit our Observation at Semiconductor Index Tests Critical Level.
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