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Market Drifts to Small Loss; Dow Off Fraction

October 19, 1985|From Times Wire Services

NEW YORK — The stock market drifted to a small loss Friday, pulling back from record highs in the Dow Jones industrial average as trading slowed.

The widely recognized average of 30 blue chips slipped 0.45 to 1,368.84, finishing the week with a net gain of 28.90 points.

Volume on the New York Stock Exchange dropped off to 107.08 million shares from 140.51 million on Thursday.

The Dow Jones industrials set record closing highs on Wednesday and Thursday. But other, broader market measures remained well below peaks that they reached in mid-summer or earlier.

Economic News

Analysts say chart-watching traders may become increasingly concerned over this "divergence," or "non-confirmation" of the Dow's new high.

In Friday's economic news, the Commerce Department reported that personal income rose 0.3% last month, matching its rate of increase in August.

Meanwhile, intense takeover speculation continued in the stock market. Litton Industries jumped 11 points to 89 on rumors of an impending bid for the company.

However, General Electric issued a statement denying that it had had any discussions about a possible acquisition of Litton. GE shares lost 1/2 to 59 7/8.

Union Carbide, also caught up in unconfirmed speculation about a possible buy-out, rose 2 7/8 to 60. The stock is a component of the Dow Jones industrial average.

Among other blue chips, International Business Machines fell 7/8 to 127 5/8, Exxon 1 1/8 to 52 5/8 and General Motors 5/8 to 69. Aluminum Co. of America, which reported slightly lower third-quarter earnings, gained 1/2 to 32 3/8.

American Express, which came in with higher quarterly profits on Thursday, added 3/4 to 44.

Beatrice Unchanged

Among stocks that have been talked up as potential takeover or buy-out candidates lately, ITT Corp. rose 7/8 to 35 5/8, Anheuser-Busch 3/4 to 36 and Texas Oil & Gas 3/8 to 18 7/8. Texas Oil & Gas led the active list on turnover of more than 3.8 million shares.

Beatrice, second among the volume leaders, was unchanged at 46 1/8. This week the company said that it had received a buy-out proposal with a price tag of $45 in cash and securities.

Friday's session brought the expiration date for October options on stocks and stock indexes. However, there was little evidence of the kind of last-minute trading activity that has sometimes caused wide swings in stock prices.

In the daily tally on the Big Board, declining issues slightly outnumbered advances. The exchange's composite index of all its listed common stocks fell 0.26 to 108.15.

Nationwide turnover in NYSE-listed issues, including trades in those stocks on regional exchanges and in the over-the-counter market, totaled 126.88 million shares.

Large blocks of 10,000 or more shares traded on the NYSE totaled 2,154, compared to 2,867 on Thursday.

Standard & Poor's index of 400 industrials lost 0.82 to 208.67, and S&P's 500-stock composite index was down 0.62 at 187.04.

The Wilshire index of 5,000 equities closed at 1,922.766, down 3.558.

The NASDAQ composite index for the over-the-counter market rose 0.13 to 288.38.

At the American Stock Exchange, the market-value index closed at 225.84, down 0.05.

Bond Prices Mostly Off

Bond prices finished mostly lower and short-term interest rates edged higher.

A price decline in the afternoon session erased a tiny advance earlier in the day.

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