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Tech Industry

MARKET CLOSE: Dow, Nasdaq cool their heels

Blue-chip stocks retreated Wednesday as falling bond prices and a batch of service interruptions among leading Internet sites conspired to chop 258 points off the Dow Jones industrial average. The Nasdaq shed 63 points to 4,363.87.

After hitting a record high in its previous three days, the Nasdaq was hampered by concerns that Internet security may not be as proficient as previously thought.

"Investors think the only place to get gains in this time of pricing pressures and rising interest rates is technology,'' said Rick Meckler, senior managing director at Liberty View. "The biggest contrast you can see is between Cisco and Nike. Cisco reported really phenomenal growth and Nike is more typical of most stocks after reporting nowhere near Cisco's growth."

Cisco (CSCO) shares closed up 3 to 128 13/16 after reporting better-than-expected second-quarter earnings. Lucent Technologies Inc. (LU) fell 1 9/16 to 52 5/8 and 3Com Corp. (COMS) inched up 1/2 to 59 1/2.

Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), one of several sites victimized by hackers, lost 2 7/8 to 80 1/4 while eBay Inc. (EBAY) and Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) plunged 5 3/4 and 10 13/16 a share, respectively. America Online Inc. (AOL) fell 1 3/16 to 57 7/8 and Lycos Inc. (LCOS) closed off 1 11/16 to 70 3/8.

Among widely held PC stocks, Dell Computer Corp. (DELL) lost 1 3/8 to 35 11/16; Gateway Inc. (GTW) shed 3 1/8 to 56 7/8; Apple Computer Inc. (AAPL) trimmed 2 1/4 to 112 5/8 and Compaq Computer Corp. (CPQ) closed off 1 9/16 to 26 3/16.

MarketWatch.com, Inc. (Nasdaq: MKTW) tumbled 3 7/8 to 41 1/8 after it said Wednesday its fourth quarter loss was 64 cents a share, just beating First Call's consensus estimate of 66 cents a share.

On the IPO front, Vicinity (Nasdaq: VCNT) closed up 31 3/4 to 48 3/4 in its debut after it priced shares at $17, well above their range, which was raised many times in a sign of strong demand. Delano Technology (Nasdaq: DTEC) gained 32 1/2 to 50 1/2 and Landacorp (Nasdaq: LCOR) picked up 5 15/16 to 15 15/16 in its initial public offering.

Sun Microsystems (Nasdaq: SUNW) rose 4 9/16 to 91 9/16 after the company said revenue could be up 25 percent and an analyst upped his earnings estimate.

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) slid 5 15/16 to 104 and Oracle Corp. (ORCL) picked up 7/8 to 60 7/16.

Intel Corp. (INTC) lopped off 4 3/16 to 104 5/8 and Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) added 11/16 to close at 42 1/16.