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Tech Industry

MARKET CLOSE: Earnings anticipation pushes techs up

    Technology stocks rose ahead of some key third quarter earnings reports Wednesday.

    The tech-infused Nasdaq Composite Index rose 57.53 to 2,857.20, the S&P 500 gained 24.03 to 1,325.38, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 187.75 to 10,588.34. Inter@ctive Week's @100 Index increased 82.78 to 5,120.09.

    A day after the market dropped on inflation fears, optimism about the start of earnings season carried the day. "We have a basically oversold market," said Richard Cripps, chief market strategist at Legg Mason Wood Walker in Baltimore. "We have some optimism developing over third quarter earnings coming up. A rally was expected."

    Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD) was up 13/16 to 19 7/16 ahead of its third quarter earnings report. AMD has been busy prepping its Athlon chips and analysts will be expecting to hear more on its conference call. Wall Street, however, isn't expecting much financially -- a loss of 97 cents a share is expected.

    AMD rival Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) jumped 3/4 to 76 15/16.

    Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO) increased 2 7/16 to 175 3/4 ahead of its earnings. First Call consensus is 9 cents a share.

    Sterling Commerce (NYSE: SE) was among the day's winners, jumping 5.7 percent on a good earnings outlook. Shares were up 1 3/16 to 22 3/16.

    A trio of initial public offerings soared. Breakaway Solutions advanced 28 1/4 to 42 1/4. Silicon Image (Nasdaq: SIMG) picked up 14 3/4 to 26 3/4, and SmartDisk (Nasdaq: SMDK) increased 12 13/16 to 25 13/16. Another IPO, DSL.net (Nasdaq: DSLN), saw a milder gain of 1 17/32 to 8 17/32.

    Also thriving was a secondary offering for Ditech Communications (Nasdaq: DITC), up 16 to 69. The maker of systems to improve communications network performance sold 2.25 million shares three months after its IPO.

    AT&T Corp. (NYSE: T) was up 5 1/16 to 63 15/16 after Leo J. Hindery Jr., CEO of its cable television business unit, said he is resigning to "pursue other interests."

    MCI WorldCom Inc. (Nasdaq: WCOM) , up 2 15/16 to 70 7/8, and Sprint Corp. (NYSE: FON), up 5 1/16 to 63 15/16, continued to be heavily traded following their merger. Qwest Communications (Nasdaq: QWST) was up 1 5/8 to 34 7/8. Global Crossing (Nasdaq: GBLX) gained 3 5/16 to 28 1/2.

    Apple Computer Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) fell 3/4 to 67 3/16 a day after unveiling new iMacs and a new version of the venerable MacOS.

    Manufacturing software maker Structural Dynamics Research (Nasdaq: SDRC) dropped 3 9/16 to 11 15/16. The company said third quarter earnings and revenues will fall below analysts' expectations due to charges from two acquistions and a royalty payment.

    Savoir Technology Group Inc. (Nasdaq: SVTG) retreated 2 25/32 to 4 15/16. The company yesterday said third-quarter profits would fall short of Wall Street expectations as year 2000 fears hit sales.

    Among other active stocks, America Online Inc. (NYSE: AOL) was up 4 3/4 to 118 1/4, Dell (Nasdaq: DELL) slipped 1/2 to 43 5/16, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) rose 1 7/8 to 93 11/16, and Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) went up 3/4 to 76 15/16.>