Mid-Day Report

The markets gave up most of its earlier gains as investors focused on the ongoing turmoil among financial services companies. The Dow lost 9 points to 11,137 while Nasdaq added 8 points to 2243.

On the upside

Shares of Excel Technology (Nasdaq: XLTC) soared after GSI Group (Nasdaq: GSIG) offered nearly $350 million in cash to buy the industrial laser marking systems maker.

Shares of chicken producers Sanderson Farms (Nasdaq: SAFM) and Pilgrim's Pride (NYSE: PPC) surged as analysts upgraded the sector due to its low valuation.

Shares of Alcoa (NYSE: AA) rebounded after the 3rd-largest aluminum producer posted lower profits that beat estimates.

On the downside

Shares of embattled investment bank Lehman Brothers Holdings (NYSE: LEH) tumbled to a 8-year lows as the cost of debt protection rose and investors continued to worry about mortgage-related losses.

Wachovia Corp. (NYSE: WB) named a new CEO, but analysts slashed their share price targets on the Charlotte-based bank.

Sports apparel and equipment retailer Zumiez (Nasdaq: ZUMZ) reported a larger than expected drop in same-store sales for the month of June.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of 5 to 4 on the NYSE, but were outpaced by a margin of 5 to 4 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 2 points to 669.

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