By Benjamin Pimentel, MarketWatch
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Technology stocks were mostly in the red Thursday, as the broader market slipped on news of higher U.S. jobless claims.
Major players in the personal computer market also took a hit as data from IDC and Gartner point to slower PC growth.
The Nasdaq Composite Index (RIXF) was down about 2 points, or 0.1%, to 2,732. The Morgan Stanley High Tech 35 Index (MU) and the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX) were each down a fraction.
On the positive side, Micron Technology (MU) was up 4.4% after Sterne Agee upgraded the memory chip maker's stock to buy from neutral.
"We are upgrading Micron to a buy, $12 price target from neutral, as we think DRAM pricing will start to moderate and stabilize over the next couple of months," Sterne Agee analyst Vijay Rakesh said in a note.
Micron was also upgraded to outperform from neutral by Baird.
Meanwhile, shares of EMC Corp. (EMC) also gained 1%. Lazard Capital upgraded the stock's rating to buy from hold.
Shares of major players in the PC slipped after Gartner and IDC reported fourth-quarter PC data showing growth, partly due to stiffer competition from other devices, particularly Apple Inc.'s (AAPL) iPad.
"The preliminary read confirms our fears of weak consumer demand and the early effects of the tablet invasion," J.P. Morgan analyst Mark Moskowitz said in a note. "In our view, these preliminary results, specifically indications of weaker-than-expected growth in Asia-Pacific, present modest downside risk to our PC market estimates."
Intel Corp. (INTC) stock was down about 1%, ahead of the chip giant's fourth-quarter earnings report after the closing bell.
Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) was down 1.4%, while Dell Inc. (DELL) and Hewlett-Packard (MSFT) were each behind a fraction. Shares of Apple Inc. were up slightly.
Shares of TTM Technologies (TTMI) were up 9% after the printed circuit board manufacturer raised its fourth-quarter guidance.