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MIDDAY MARKETS: Nasdaq hovers in the red

The Nasdaq flirted with gains again Wednesday, though it remained the red at midday even though Abby Joseph Cohen spoke reassuringly about the stock market, and economists mulled over the "new economy." The Nasdaq slipped 28.17 to 4,120.72, and the Dow Jones industrial average climbed 65.77 to 10,696.37.

The Inter@ctive Week @Net Index fell 4 to 567.62.

Top economic figures were pondering the economy Wednesday, just after Tuesday's volatile trading that sent the tech-heavy Nasdaq index down as much as 13.6 percent at one point in the afternoon.

Just as the Nasdaq started to let out steam, President Clinton met with luminaries such as Alan Greenspan, Bill Gates and Nobel laureate Amartya Sen to discuss the new economy. Abby Joseph Cohen, Goldman Sachs' influential Wall Street analyst, who also attended the gathering, reassured the markets Wednesday by issuing a statement that she remained enthusiastic about "the outlook for stock prices in the United States."

i2 Technologies (Nasdaq: ITWO) rose 11 3/4 to 106 6/16 Wednesday after an analyst praised a deal with IBM (NYSE: IBM). Among other B2B software stocks, PurchasePro (Nasdaq: PPRO) lost 4 1/2 to 55, Oracle (Nasdq: ORCL) rose 13/16 to 76 3/4 and Ariba (Nasdaq: ARBA)gained 3 7/8 to 102 1/2.

Ulticom (Nasdaq: ULCM) rose 3 5/8 to 16 5/8 after the provider of signaling software for voice and data communications networks, priced 4.25 million shares at $13 each for its IPO. Vyyo (Nasdaq: VYYO) , up 9 1/8 to 22 1/8 also gained in debut.

AMD (NYSE: AMD) rose 6 1/8 to 67 1/4 after it said revenue will be about $1.06 billion, 10 percent higher than the fourth quarter sales tally. Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) fell 1 3/4 to 131.

Western Digital (NYSE: WDC) rose 13/16 to 7 1/4 after shareholders actually received some good news. The company said it would beat estimates.

Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) was down 1 3/4 to 86 13/16 and Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO) fell 9/16 to 72 9/16.

Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO) lost 4 7/8 to 162 1/2 ahead of its earnings expected after the bell, America Online Inc. (NYSE: AOL) rose 1 to 63 7/8, and Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) lost 1 1/16 to 62 7/8,