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Tech Industry

MIDDAY MARKETS: Tech sell-off continues amid Net concerns

Techs gave in to selling again at midday Thursday, as sizzling telephony issues and discounted stocks failed to lure investors into what is increasingly seen as an overvalued sector. The Nasdaq shed 30.10 to 4,427.79, while the Dow Jones industrial average climbed 37.85 to 11,018.10.

The Inter@ctive Week @Net Index slipped 16 to 594.28.

After a week of selling which sent the Nasdaq down 11 percent, investors weren't even buying into the dip.

Net2Phone (Nasdaq: NTOP) was one of the day's few winners; it rose 5 1/4 to 60 5/8 after AT&T (NYSE: T), down 3/4 to 57 1/16, and its partners said Friday they will acquire a 39 percent voting stake in the company. Shares were bought from IDT's (Nasdaq: IDTC) giving chief Howard Jonas lots to say, and sending IDT's stock up 12 percent, or 4 3/8 to 41 5/8.

AOL (NYSE: AOL), down 13/16 to 64 3/16, will make an additional investment in Net2Phone "in the next couple days."

Gains from (Nasdaq: DDDC), up 1/4 to 19 7/8, and other Net2Phone competitors iBasis (IBAS), down 1/8 to 43 7/8 and ITXC (Nasdaq: ITXC), had petered out after early morning jumps.

On the IPO front, ValueClick (Nasdaq: VCLK) hovered just above its opening priced, up 1/4 to 19 1/4 after pricing shares at $19, the middle of their range.

Networking specialist ArrowPoint Communications (Nasdaq: ARPT) priced its IPO at $34, well above its raised range.

New Era of Networks (Nasdaq: NEON) rose 1 5/16 to 40 5/16 after it said the future was bright for its first quarter Friday; the company expects revenue to be between $40 million and $41 million.

Auditors for the online health network Dr. Koop (Nasdaq: KOOP) said they question the ability of the company to continue as a going concern. Shares plummeted 2 7/8 to 3 3/8.

Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT), rose 1 5/8 to 105. Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) was up 2 59/64 to 129 49/64.

Ariba (Nasdaq: ARBA) lost 17 percent, or 37 1/8 to 182 7/8 and Commerce One (Nasdaq: CMRC) plunged 21 percent, or 35 7/8 to 137 7/16 after getting downgrades from Prudential. Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) lost 2 3/8 to 64 1/8, and Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO) lost 5 3/32 to 164 13/32.