Bloomberg News

JERSEY CITY - Discount and online brokerages' stock prices tumbled Friday after National Discount Brokers Group Inc. announced that it will have a first-quarter loss instead of the profit analysts had forecast.

The company said in a press release that it will have a loss from continuing operations of 6 cents to 9 cents a share for the quarter that ended Aug. 31.

Analysts surveyed by First Call/Thomson Financial had expected National to earn 9 cents.

Revenue for the quarter will be about $67 million, up 26% from the year-earlier period.

The company said it had about $70 million in pretax expenses, up about 34%, because it had more employees and higher trade-execution charges.

National said it expects to report results Sept. 26.

The discount broker's shares fell as much as 24% in early trading Friday, and the news dragged down shares of other trading operations.

Knight Trading Group Inc., another big market maker, was at $29.25, down $2, or 6.4%.

Shares of E-Trade Group Inc. fell 69 cents, or 3.6%, to $18.38; Ameritrade Holding Corp. $1, or 4.8%, to $19.81;Web Street Inc. 13 cents, or 4.5%, to $2.63; and DLJdirect Inc. 25 cents, or 3, to $8.

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