Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Wednesday Watch

Earnings Announcements

None of Note

Economic Data
ISM Non-Manufacturing estimated at 63.5 in Feb. vs. 65.7 in Jan.
Fed's Beige Book Report

Late-Night News
China's semiconductor consumption will jump 30% to $37B this year as expansion by television, mobile-phone and digital camera-makers fuels demand, Gartner Inc. said. It will rise another 27% to $47B in 05, with overseas chipmakers accounting for 90% of the market. Ask Jeeves will no longer allow advertisers and web site operators to pay to boost their ranking in its search index, the Wall Street Journal said. California's plan to sell as much as $15B in bonds appears headed for voter approval, the LA Times reported. South Korean business confidence reached a 17-month high in February as exports grew at their fastest pace in 15 years. Senator Kerry won primaries in 8 states on the biggest night of voting in the Democratic presidential nomination race. Kerry's victories prompted Senator Edwards to drop out of the race.

Late-Night Trading
Asian markets are mostly lower, ranging from unch. to -2.5%.
S&P 500 indicated -.06%.
NASDAQ indicated -.03%.

BOTTOM LINE: The weakness in Asia could lead to more selling in the U.S. markets in the morning. While I don't expect a substantial down day, modest deterioration is likely. I will closely monitor the relative strength of the Portfolio on the open before making any reductions in market exposure.

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