Closing Bell Report

Sluggish retail sales and comments by Fed chief Bernanke that business growth will slow sent the markets down to a lower close with the Dow falling 34 points to 13,266. Nasdaq plummeted 53 points to 2696.

On the upside

Upbeat earnings from First Solar lifted shares of Evergreen Solar (Nasdaq: ESLR).

Although King Pharmaceuticals (NYSE: KG) swung to a third quarter loss due to special charges, the results beat expecations by 7 cents.

Fremont General (NYSE: FMT) reported lower third quarter earnings but it was the first quarterly profit for 2007.

On the downside

Industrial Enterprises America (Nasdaq: IEAM) CFO Jorge Yepes has been suspended while the company reviews possible policy and procedure violations.

Kenexa (Nasdaq: KNXA) reported higher third quarter earnings but sales fell short of expectations and the human resources services provider cut its full year outlook.

Concerns that VMware (NYSE: VMW) will lose its dominance of the virtualization solutions market sent the stock price tumbling.

In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of more than 10 to 9 on both the NYSE and Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks added 5 points to 781.

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