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MIDDAY MARKETS: Dell guidance hammers techs

Dell Computer's lower-than-expected guidance on sales growth hit techs hard at midday Friday, sinking PC and chip stocks. The Nasdaq tumbled 97 to 3,103.35 and the Dow Jones industrial average shed 116.03 to 10,718.22.

The Inter@ctive Week @Net Index fell 10 to 404.00.

Despite meeting analyst estimates for the quarter, Dell's (Nasdaq: DELL) third cut to its sales target this year dealt a big blow to techs Friday; several analysts downgraded the PC maker. Dell lost over 18 percent, down 5.13 to 23.25. Gateway (NYSE: GTW) slipped 4.3 to 41.9, Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) was down 0.56 to 19.63.

IBM (NYSE: IBM) dropped 3.5 to 95.94, Sun Microsystems Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW) shed 7.25 to 90.38 and computer networking equipment maker Cisco Systems (Nasdaq: CSCO) lost 0.94 to 52.31

Computer hardware maker Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) shed 3.63 to 37.75 after a downgrade from Morgan Stanley Dean Witter & Co.

Cisco Systems (Nasdaq: CSCO) said that it will buy Active Voice (Nasdaq: ACVC) for $296 million in stock. Active Voice, who also reported better-than-expected third quarter results, gained 4.31 to 19.25.

Qualcomm (Nasdaq: QCOM) saw European patents for its Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) digital wireless technology upheld against a challenge from Nokia (NYSE: NOK).

Netpliance, Inc. (Nasdaq: NPLI), off 0.03 to 1.53, fell short of analyst estimates. The company also announced it would reorganize and slash its workforce by 38 percent.

Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) dropped 0.16 to 31.09, AOL (NYSE: AOL) slipped 0.78 to 51.9 and Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO) rose 1.69 to 60.5.

Among other leading tech issues:, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) was down 2.13 to 68.75, and Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL) was down 1.25 to 25.94.