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MARKET CLOSE: Techs flat ahead of earnings barrage

Blue-chip stocks made strong gains Tuesday as the Dow Jones industrial average rallied up 127 points to 10,652.66. Technology stocks were flat ahead of some key earnings report as the Nasdaq composite trimmed 8 points to 2,618.43.

“I have never seen an earnings period that has been greeted with more trepidation by technology investors,” said Arnold Berman, technology strategist with Wit SoundView. “The list of worries so far is a lot longer than the list of surprises.”

Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) fell 75 cents to $31.38 after announcing it would snap up Xircom (Nasdaq: XIRC), up $6.59 to $24.66, for $748 million. The chip giant is also expected to report lackluster results after the closing bell this afternoon. Intel has already issued a profit warning.

Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) shed 75 cents to $17.06 and IBM (IBM) closed off $1.19 to $92.63.

Among widely held PC stocks, Dell (DELL) trimmed 63 cents to $21.50; Compaq (CPQ) lost 57 cents to $17.75; Apple Computer (AAPL) dropped 13 cents to $17.06 and Gateway (GTW) closed off 90 cents to $20.20.

Yahoo (YHOO) moved up 81 cents to $27.38. America Online (AOL) tacked on 23 cents to $46.70 while (AMZN) and CMGI (CMGI) moved up 38 cents and 97 cents, respectively. eBay (EBAY) shot up $3.75 to finish at $43.81.

Shares of Xpedior Inc. (Nasdaq: XPDR) gained 55 cents to $1.30 after the company inked a strategic alliance agreement with Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HWP), off 31 cents to $30.38. The deal designates both companies as providers for BroadVision (Nasdaq: BVSN), up $1 to $16.81, products.

Parametric Technology Corp. (Nasdaq: PMTC) lost 88 cents to $15.25 after it topped earnings estimates for its first quarter, but revenue slipped year-over year.

Microsoft (MSFT) shed 94 cents to $52.56. Oracle (ORCL) fell 50 cents to $31.81 and Sun Microsystems (SUNW) closed up 94 cents to $31.38.

Cisco Systems (CSCO) tacked on 44 cents to $38.50. Lucent Technologies (LU) dropped 75 cents to $18.19 and Nortel Networks (NT) finished off $1.44 to $31.94.