Let's see if tomorrow's numbers broadside the ship. Most U.S. Stocks Fall as Confidence, Home Sales Trail Forecasts By Nick Baker http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aBHe3rx.OlEs&refer=home April 24 (Bloomberg) -- Most U.S. stocks declined after consumer confidence and home sales trailed forecasts, reviving concern the economy is slowing. An expanded share repurchase by International Business Machines Corp. lifted the Dow Jones Industrial Average to its eighth gain in nine days. AT&T Inc. led telephone companies to the steepest retreat in the Standard & Poor's 500 Index after subscribers rose less than analysts expected. Retailers declined after Target Corp., the nation's second-largest discount chain, cut its April sales growth projection. Seven stocks fell for every five that gained on the New York Stock Exchange after Americans' confidence slumped to the lowest in eight months, sapped by concerns about increasing fuel costs and a wave of mortgage defaults. Sales of previously owned homes in the U.S. dropped in March to the lowest in almost four years, delaying an improvement in housing. ``The recovery is over. Now it's just a question of how far and how fast the economy will slow down,'' said Richard Weiss, who manages about $50 billion as chief investment officer at City National Bank in Beverly Hills, California. ``We don't expect much out of equities this year.'' The S&P 500 slipped 0.52 to 1480.41. The Dow average added 34.54, or 0.3 percent, to 12,953.94. The Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.87 to 2524.54. Benchmark indexes fell yesterday after crude oil rose and concern mounted that home loan defaults will accelerate, overshadowing the biggest day for takeovers since 2000. Some 1.64 billion shares changed hands on the Big Board today, 3 percent more than the three-month daily average. AT&T Drops AT&T lost 67 cents to $39.10. While the biggest U.S. mobile phone service provider said profit almost doubled last quarter, its addition of 1.2 million subscribers fell short of some estimates. UBS AG analyst John Hodulik expected 1.5 million. A measure of telephone stocks in the S&P 500 declined 0.7 percent for the worst performance among 10 industries. Target slumped $1.10 to $60.33 after saying cold weather kept shoppers away this month. Sales at stores open at least a year for March and April combined will rise as much as 4 percent, less than its projection of a 4 percent to 6 percent gain, the company said. Industrywide, sales at stores open at least a year declined 0.3 percent in the seven days through April 21 from the previous week, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers and UBS Securities LLC. Sales for all of April may be unchanged from 2006, the ICSC and UBS said. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., which this month said April sales may be unchanged or decline, slipped 24 cents to $48.69. Gap Inc., the nation's biggest clothing retailer, fell 17 cents to $18.74. Retailers in the S&P 500 dropped 0.6 percent as a group. Economy Watch Reports today showing slower housing resales and deteriorating consumer confidence may signal the economy, which is projected to have grown last quarter at the weakest pace in more than a year, won't accelerate in coming months. Existing home sales slid 8.4 percent in March to an annual rate of 6.12 million, the National Association of Realtors said. A separate private report showed home-price declines in 20 major cities accelerated in February. The Conference Board's consumer confidence index fell to 104 from 108.2. Treasuries gained, pushing the benchmark 10-year note's yield to a three-week low and the dollar dropped to within a half-cent of a record low against the euro. Crude oil retreated in New York. IBM, Texas Instruments Gains in IBM and Texas Instruments Inc. pushed computer- related shares in the S&P 500 up 0.8 percent, the top performance among 10 industries. IBM, the world's largest computer-services company, gained $3.28 to $98.49. Its 3.5 percent advance was the steepest in the Dow average and the most since October 2004. IBM boosted its share-buyback program by $15 billion and raised its quarterly dividend by 33 percent to 40 cents. Texas Instruments jumped $2.51, or 7.7 percent, to $34.92 for its best advance since March 2006. The world's largest maker of mobile-phone chips forecast earnings that exceeded analysts' estimates after saying it recovered from an inventory glut and daily sales ``increased significantly'' in March from February across a wide range of products. Second-quarter profit, excluding some costs, will be as much as 45 cents a share. Analysts expected 38 cents, the average of estimates compiled by Bloomberg. ``Business in general, here and around the world, is strong enough to provide more demand for technology,'' said Richard Sichel, who helps oversees $1.5 billion as chief investment officer of Philadelphia Trust Co. in Philadelphia. ``Tech could become more of a standout.'' Whirlpool, DuPont Among other companies that reported earnings, Whirlpool Corp. said first-quarter profit from continuing operations was $1.55 a share. Analysts expected $1.13, on average. Shares of the world's largest appliance maker surged $12.50 to $102.85. Its 14 percent gain was the biggest since September 1997. DuPont Co. added 67 cents to $49.86. The No. 3 U.S. chemical maker said first-quarter profit climbed 16 percent after soaring demand for ethanol in the U.S. spurred sales of corn seed. Express Scripts Inc. jumped $8.08 to a record $96.98 after profit topped analysts' estimates and the company raised its forecast. The third-largest U.S. manager of drug benefits got a boost from sales of generic versions of drugs such as Pfizer Inc.'s antidepressant Zoloft and Merck & Co.'s cholesterol pill Zocor. Paccar Paccar Inc. climbed $7.77, or 9.9 percent, to $86.56 for the biggest surge since March 2000. The No. 3 truckmaker said first- quarter profit climbed 7 percent on growth in Europe, beating analysts' estimates. Better-than-expected earnings spurred analysts last week to boost first-quarter profit growth estimates at S&P 500 companies to 6.2 percent from 3.1 percent, Bloomberg data show. ``This economic expansion is very much intact,'' said Keith Wirtz, who manages $23 billion as chief investment officer of Fifth Third Asset Management in Cincinnati. ``We'll get better- than-average stock market returns this year.'' Wirtz expects the S&P 500 to surpass 1600, climbing above the March 2000 record high of 1527.46 this year. Not all technology shares rose. Lexmark International Inc. lost $5.57, or 9 percent, to $56.44 for the steepest drop in the S&P 500. The No. 2 U.S. printer maker reported profit and sales that missed analysts' estimates after larger rival Hewlett- Packard Co. cut prices to win customers. Shares of Hewlett-Packard added 24 cents to $41.65. Juniper Networks Drops Juniper Networks Inc. dropped 24 cents to $20.87. The world's second-biggest maker of equipment for directing Internet traffic said first-quarter profit fell 12 percent as the company boosted research spending to compete with Cisco Systems Inc. Piper Jaffray & Co. cut Juniper to ``market perform'' from ``outperform.'' The Russell 2000 Index, a benchmark for companies with a median market value of $681.2 million, lost 0.1 percent to 826.36. The Dow Jones Wilshire 5000 Index, the broadest measure of U.S. shares, retreated 0.1 percent to 14,972.49. Based on its decline, the value of stocks decreased by $14.2 billion.