Redmond Moves Unnerve McAfee Investors

Shares of McAfee sank Monday after Microsoft made its second move against the security company in a week.


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Posted December 20, 2004

Paul Shread

Shares of McAfee sank 6.8% Monday after Microsoft made its second move against the security software company in a week.

Microsoft gave the antivirus business for its Hotmail Web-based email service to Trend Micro , replacing McAfee. Shares of Trend Micro leapt 8.5% on the news.

Analysts said the move would likely have little impact on McAfee, but following the software giant's move into the anti-spyware space last week, investors could be getting a little nervous about Microsoft's security plans. If nothing else, analysts said it makes it less likely that Microsoft will be acquiring McAfee, as had been rumored earlier this year.

The broader market was mixed Monday, as an early rally on the first gain in leading indicators in six months gave way to profit-taking.

The Nasdaq fell 7 to 2127, the S&P 500 was unchanged at 1194, and the Dow climbed 11 to 10,661. Volume declined to 1.42 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2 billion on the Nasdaq. Decliners led by a handful of issues on the NYSE, and by 20 to 11 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 52% on the NYSE, and 68% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 244-12 on the NYSE, and 144-17 on the Nasdaq.

After the close, Jabil beat estimates, and Silicon Storage warned.

During the day, Monolithic surged 11% on a positive write-up in Barron's.

Nortech fell 14% on a warning.

Standard Microsystems plunged 18% on its results.

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