- The Washington Times - Saturday, November 23, 2002

NEW YORK (AP) Blue-chip stocks notched their seventh straight week of gains the longest streak in more than four years on a day of mixed trading yesterday, when many investors couldn't resist cashing in.
A pullback was somewhat expected after a two-day surge pushed stocks to their highest level in months, analysts said. Lighter trading in advance of the Thanksgiving holiday also contributed to price swings.
"We're having a bit of pause after yesterday's big rally," said Ed Peters, chief investment officer at PanAgora Asset Management Inc. "With the advance being so quick, people are reassessing."
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 40.31, or 0.5 percent, to close at 8,804.84, snapping a two-day gain of 370 points. On Thursday, blue chips closed at their highest level since Aug. 26, when it stood at 8,919.01.
The broader market finished mixed. The Nasdaq Composite Index inched up 1.19, or 0.1 percent, to 1,468.74, after closing Thursday at a level not seen since July. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index declined 3.21, or 0.3 percent, to 930.55.
For the week, the Dow gained 2.6 percent to post its seventh winning week, a feat not seen since the period ended March 20, 1998. The Nasdaq climbed 4.1 percent and the S&P; 500 rose 2.3 percent, their sixth week of gains in seven weeks.
Analysts said investors have been upbeat after Wall Street's recent rally and are generally looking to buy since the end of the year traditionally has been the strongest time for stocks.
But analysts caution that stocks remain vulnerable to declines caused by profit-taking as well as concerns about terrorism and a war with Iraq.
Philip S. Dow, managing director of equity strategy at Dain Rauscher Wessels, said he believes the market has the potential to see an additional 5 percent to 7 percent of gains by year's end, as money managers scramble to avoid missing out on the recent advance.


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