Thus prodded, investors fled sector-wide, driving the NASDAQ down by more than 30 points after a decline of almost 31 points the day before. TIME Wall Street columnist Daniel Kadlec saw this coming; the tech sector has almost uniformly been too high for too long. "The hits that U.S. tech companies took in Asia haven't yet been reflected in their stock prices," he said. "There'll be a lot of days like this this winter."
Tech stocks love to follow leaders. Oracle's earnings disappointment set the tone Tuesday; Wednesday the headliner was normally invicible Microsoft, which lost 2 1/4 on the after-close-Tuesday announcement that it was feeling the effect of declining computer sales in--guess where?--Asia (specifically Japan.)