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MIDDAY MARKETS: Microsoft and Intel lead techs

Microsoft and Intel both forged ahead on positive legal developments at midday Tuesday. The Nasdaq Composite Index tumbled 8.14 to 3,733.08 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 133.18 to 10,674.97.

The Inter@ctive Week @Net Index rose 5 to 524.97.

The U.S. Supreme Court handed Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), up 2.31 to 63.56, a victory on Tuesday, agreeing with the giant software company that its appeal of antitrust violations should be heard by a lower appellate court.

In an up and down legal day, Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC), down 0.81 to 44.56, said Tuesday that a government agency had ended an investigation into its business practices, but learned that rival Broadcom (Nasdaq: BRCM) had asked a court for an injunction in a patent dispute case. Shares of Broadcom were up 6.12 to 258.38.

Atmel Corp. (Nasdaq: ATML), up 0.63 to 16.31, reassured investors Tuesday that its business prospects remain strong despite the current weakness in the Euro and fears chip and PC companies are troubled following Intel's warning last week.

CoSine Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: COSN), maker of switches for delivering IP communication services, roared up 215 percent in its debut. The company hadpriced 10 million shares at $23 each, above its raised range for trading Tuesday. The company has come under SEC scrutiny for the way it reports revenue.

Micron Electronics (Nasdaq: MUEI), down 0.81 to 11.56, smashed past analysts' expectations for the fourth quarter, driven by a 223 percent jump in its SpecTek memory division.

Broadband chip maker PMC-Sierra (Nasdaq: PMCS), up 4.09 to 222.59, said it will acquire privately held SwitchOn Networks in a stock swap valued at $450 million.

Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) rose 0.13 to 40.5, AOL (NYSE: AOL) dropped 0.48 to 55.96 and Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO) fell 2.38 to 103.13.

Among other leading tech issues: Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO)gained 0.31 to 57.5, Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL)rose 0.81 to 79.56 and Sun Microsystems was up 0.08 to 118.06.