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MARKET CLOSE: Tech stocks take another beating

Technology stocks were pounded again Monday after analysts issued some negative comments about network-equipment and Internet stocks. The Nasdaq composite shed 152 points to 2,875.64 while the Dow Jones industrial average fell 167 points to 10,462.65.

"We have technology analysts acting like rats leaving the ship," said Bill Meehan, chief market analyst at Cantor Fitzgerald. "Analysts are hacking away at estimates and I expect that where we are right now is still probably too optimistic for 2001."

Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL) fell $4.06 to $24.75 after the company lost executive vice president Gary Bloom. Sun Microsystems (SUNW) lost $7.69 to $81.63 and Microsoft (MSFT) finished off $1.88 to $67.19.

Network-equipment stocks were roughed up after Morgan Stanley Dean Witter cut several stocks on fears of slowing demand.

Juniper Networks (JNPR) tumbled $32.88 to $121.50. Redback Networks (RBAK) and Brocade Communications (BRCD) plunged $8 and $31.75 a share, respectively, and Cisco Systems (CSCO) closed off $1.50 to $51.25.

Among widely held PC stocks, Dell (DELL) lost $1.56 to $23.38; Apple Computer (AAPL) edged up 44 cents to $18.94; Compaq (CPQ) trimmed 65 cents to $24.35 and Gateway (GTW) shed $3.53 to $36.20.

Northpoint Communications (Nasdaq: NPNT) slid 72 cents to $3.41 after the company revised previously announced third quarter results because more customers can't pay the bills.

Shares of Internet services provider Earthlink (Nasdaq: ELNK) gained $1.20 to $8.34 on news of a broadband deal with Time Warner.

Intel (INTC) shared slipped 38 cents to $41.13. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) trimmed 13 cents to $20.44 and IBM (IBM) finished up $1.31 to $103.25.