Originally created 01/27/99

Additional business news



Big-name stocks give market boost

NEW YORK -- Big-name stocks and technology issues rose for a second straight day Tuesday as some high-profile companies announced stock splits, dividend increases and earnings that met or exceeded expectations.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 121.26 to 9,324.58, leaving it 220 points shy of its closing record of 9,544.97 on Jan. 6.

Tuesday's rally was largely confined to well-known companies. Declining issues ran even with advancers on the New York Stock Exchange, where volume was moderately heavy at 872.42 million shares, up from Monday's pace.

Study: U.S. confident on jobs

A survey by the Conference Board released Tuesday found consumers are feeling better about the current financial situation than they did during December, particularly when it comes to the availability of jobs.

The business research group reported its index of consumer confidence rose 0.9 point to 127.6 from a revised 126.7 in December. The index dropped sharply in October and has since been making a steady recovery.

Consumers' sentiment is an important economic indicator since their spending accounts for two-thirds of the nation's overall economic activity.

Agency investigates eBay

NEW YORK -- Less than two weeks after it announced five initiatives to combat fraud, the online auction service eBay Inc. is itself being investigated by the city's fraud-fighting Department of Consumer Affairs.

The agency is looking into whether people who use the San Jose, Calif.-based company to sell just about everything falsely labeled some sports memorabilia as "one-of-a-kind," specifically, the department is looking into whether baseballs purportedly signed by Babe Ruth, Roberto Clemente and Christy Mathewson are authentic, a source close to the investigation told the Associated Press.

Nasdaq brokers warn of delays

WASHINGTON -- Concerned about the recent wild swings of the Nasdaq Stock Market, the brokers' group operating the market has warned investors they may lose money from delays in executing trades or may be unable to get into their online accounts.

And as trading volume shoots higher than the electronic Nasdaq market can handle, NASD Regulation, the self-policing arm of the National Association of Securities Dealers, is suggesting that brokerage firms, too, warn investors of possible losses and aggravation.

Coke profits fall 27 percent

ATLANTA -- Coca-Cola Co.'s profit fell 27 percent for the fourth quarter and 14 percent for all of 1998 as overseas economic problems took a toll on the huge soft drink company. Its stock price sank even though the decline had been anticipated on Wall Street.

The company reported Tuesday it earned $597 million, or 24 cents per share, in the October-December period, down from $817 million, or 33 cents per share, a year earlier.

In trading on the New York Stock Exchange, Coca-Cola shares closed down 37 1/2 cents at $62.56 1/4 .