Street hit hard Thursday

Dow lost 3%; Nasdaq dropped 3.2%

Wall Street reacted badly Thursday to reports from retailers suggesting that Americans reined in their discretionary spending in August, and the major indexes, including The Hollywood Reporter Showbiz 50, retreated into bear territory.

The Dow Jones, S&P 500 and Showbiz 50 each lost 3% Wednesday while the Nasdaq dropped 3.2%.

Bear markets are called when stocks have fallen 20% from recent highs, which is the case with all four indexes as of Thursday. The Dow and Showbiz 50, for example, were each trading more than 20% higher 11 months ago.

On Thursday, just seven of the Showbiz 50 stocks rose, with the biggest gainer being Hearst-Argyle Television, up 2.5%, followed by Blockbuster, up 2.2%.

Another gainer was Take-Two Interactive Software, up fractionally after the company reported better-than-expected results in its fiscal third quarter primarily because of big sales of the "Grand Theft Auto IV" video game.

On the downside, TiVo rewound 16.5%, erasing gains made during August. TiVo investors, though, weren't reacting to a weak economy but to indecision at a court hearing.

TiVo offered its motion Thursday for contempt against EchoStar in the ongoing patent infringement lawsuit that TiVo has won. A judge, though, did not force EchoStar to disable DVRs that Dish subscribers use, nor did it demand that a licensing deal be struck or that EchoStar immediately pay the damages already awarded to TiVo.

The judge is expected to consider the matter for at least another three weeks, but impatient shareholders dumped TiVo stock on Thursday, causing shares to fall $1.44 to $7.31 on volume of more than four times its average.

Among the conglomerates Thursday, Time Warner, News Corp. and Viacom each underperformed the falling averages. TW lost 5.3%, but the stock is still up 8% in the past month.

And Sirius XM fell 3.8% Thursday to $1.26, a five-year low.
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