MARKET CLOSE: Investors stock up on techs

2 min read

Technology stocks staged a strong rally Thursday as the Nasdaq composite stormed up 80 points to 3,940.71. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 47 points to finish at 11,055.64.

Less than a week away from the Federal Reserve Board's much-anticipated policy meeting, investors are confident that interest rates will be left unchanged.

"People are less concerned about interest rates going up and thus have greater confidence to buy into the market," said Rick Meckler, senior managing director at Liberty View. "In that current context, people's first choice remains technology issues."

It wasn't all fun and games for Hewlett-Packard (HWP) Thursday as it shares fell 4 to 107 5/8 despite posting better-than-expected earnings in its latest quarter.

Fellow PC makers Dell (DELL) and Gateway (GTW) closed up 11/16 and 1 11/16 a share, respectively. Apple Computer (AAPL) closed up 2 15/16 to 51 7/16 and Compaq (CPQ) moved trimmed 1/8 to 32 7/8.

Microsoft (MSFT) added 9/16 to 71 9/16 while Oracle (ORCL) and Sun Microsystems (SUNW) gained 2 3/4 and 4 1/16 a share, respectively.

Teen-oriented Web site iTurf (Nasdaq: TURF) fell 25/32 to 2 7/32 and dELiA*s (DLIA) rose 27/32 to 3 1/32 after the two sites agreed to merge in an effort to eventually reach profitability.

Yahoo! (YHOO) shares closed off 3 1/8 to 130 7/8. America Online (AOL) shed 1/2 to 55 while Amazon.com (AMZN) and Lycos (LCOS) shaved off 3/8 and 3/4 a share, respectively. eBay (EBAY) rallied up 5 9/16 to 63 1/16.

Optical networking firm Tellabs (Nasdaq: TLAB) picked up 1 1/16 to 62 11/16 after it named former Ameritech CEO Richard C. Notebaert as its new CEO, effective Sept. 18.

Ciena Corp. (Nasdaq: CIEN) shot up 15 15/16 to 179 3/16 after it topped expectations for the third fiscal quarter, and held out hope that they would repeat that feat in the next quarter.

ONI Systems Corp. (Nasdaq: ONIS) jumped 13 7/16 to 108 15/16 after it announced a multi-year contract win with Qwest Communications International Inc. (NYSE: Q), down 3/8 to 48 3/16..

Intel (INTC) gained 2 to 70 1/16 and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) moved up 2 1/2 to 67 3/4.