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MARKET CLOSE: Tech stocks creep higher

Technology stocks posted slight gains Wednesday as the Nasdaq composite moved up 19 points to close at 2,859.29.

The Dow Jones industrial average clipped 3 points to finish at 10,646.97.

Investors weren’t keen on taking any large positions ahead of Thursday's testimony by Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan before the Senate Budget Committee.

“The next big event is the Fed. The market is starting to hope for 50 basis points (rate cut). If we only get 25 it will lead to a short-term negative reaction,” said Arnold Berman, technology strategist at Wit SoundView. “But that would be short-term because it says the Fed does not think that things are that bad and it would mean we don't have to wait that long before we can look forward to the next interest rate cut.”

America Online (AOL) shares gained $1.60 to $55.75 after announcing it will layoff more than 2,000 employees. Yahoo (YHOO) added $3.92 to $42.88 while (AMZN) and eBay (EBAY) pushed up $2.92 and $2.13 a share, respectively. CMGI (CMGI) shares rose 63 cents to $7.19.

Shares of online services provider Digital River (Nasdaq: DRIV) jumped $1.44 to $8.94 after the company reported a strong quarter. The company also sees profitability in the fourth quarter.

Internet Security Systems (Nasdaq: ISSX) picked up $4.56 to $75.81 after it beat analyst estimates for its fourth quarter and fiscal year and raised its outlook for 2001.

Compaq Computer (CPQ) picked up $1.80 to $21.85 after it topped analysts’ reduced estimates in its latest quarter and said sales in 2001 will only increase between 6 percent and 8 percent.

Dell (DELL) added 75 cents to $27.13. Gateway (GTW) closed up 6 cents to $22.21 and Apple Computer (AAPL) closed unchanged at $20.50.

Qwest Communications (NYSE: Q) moved up $2.44 to $47.06 after it beat expectations and is on track for upcoming quarters thanks to strong growth in its Internet and data business.

Lucent (NYSE: LU) unveiled the first installment of its restructuring plan designed to shave $2 billion in expenses. The company cut 10,000 jobs Wednesday and said it would take a hefty charge in its second fiscal quarter. The stock finished up 81 cents to $19.63.

Network Appliances (Nasdaq: NTAP) plunged $12.19 to $61.38 after a downgrade from Goldman Sachs. The brokerage raised concerns that expansion into new markets may not be enough to offset slowing growth in the telecom and dot-com markets.

Microsoft (MSFT) shares rose $2.31 to $62.88. Oracle (ORCL) lost $1.42 to $30.06 and Sun Microsystems (SUNW) closed up $1.19 to $32.75.

Intel (INTC) moved up 88 cents to $36.25 while Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) and IBM (IBM) closed up 38 cents and $1.38 a share, respectively.