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Stocks Sink; Dow Down 131.05

November 30, 1998

NEW YORK (AP) _ Stocks fell sharply today in the heaviest bout of profit-taking since the market’s record-setting rebound began in early October.

At 2 p.m., the Dow Jones industrial average was down 131.05 at 9,202.03, heading for its first triple-digit loss in two months. The Dow, which gained 173.53 points last week, set a closing high of 9,374.27 last Monday for its first record since July.

Broader stock indicators also posted big losses, with the heaviest selling coming among the Internet and big technology names that have powered the Nasdaq rally.

While most analysts say the fears that dominated the market through early autumn were exaggerated, some also worry that Wall Street’s recovery will prove too exuberant with a weak global economy still pressuring company profits.

Coming less than two months after the market bottomed out on Oct. 8, last week’s return to record levels marked a 25 percent rebound for the Dow and a 50 percent rebound for the Nasdaq composite index.

In other trading today, the Standard & Poor’s 500 index was down 16.27 at 1,175.06, and the Nasdaq composite index was down 36.94 at 1,979.50. Both measures closed at record highs on Friday.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers by nearly a 2-to-3 margin on the New York Stock Exchange, while Nasdaq decliners led by an 8-to-5 ratio.

NYSE volume came to 456.63 million shares, up sharply from the sluggish pace of Friday’s shortened post-Thanksgiving session.

The NYSE composite index was down 6.80 at 576.20, and the American Stock Exchange composite index was down 9.25 at 664.67.

Overseas, Japan’s Nikkei stock average fell 1.2 percent. Germany’s DAX index fell 1.9 percent, Britain’s FT-SE 100 fell 1.7 percent, and France’s CAC-40 fell 2.7 percent.

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