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MIDDAY MARKETS: Techs shrug off inflation fears

Techs took news that another interest-rate hike could be looming in stride at midday Thursday, continuing their gains in spite of Fed chief Alan Greenspan's ominous remarks. The Nasdaq rose 47.91 to 44,75.56, while the Dow Jones industrial average slipped 69.18 to 10,492.23.

The Inter@ctive Week @Net Index gained 5 to 593.55.

Though the Nasdaq continued to rise, the Dow faltered after Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan indicated the central bank will hike interest rates again in his speech before Congress. Greenspan said there is little evidence that the Fed's short-term interest rate hikes since June 1999 have had much effect on the accelerating economy.

Greenspan's remarks were tempered by the favorable producer price index (PPI), which indicated inflation remained tame at the wholesale level. The PPI was flat in January, according to the Labor Department, below the 0.1 percent gain economists had forecast.

DoubleClick Inc (Nasdaq: DCLK) fell 11 27/32 to 94 21/32 after the Internet advertising company said it was being investigated by federal and state authorities.

French wireless company Wavecom S.A. (Nasdaq: WVCM) rose 42 to 164, or 34 percent Thursday after it announced a pact with NEC to develop a mobile phone.

Eloquent Inc. (Nasdaq: ELOQ), a media presentation software developer, jumped 20 1/2 to 36 1/2 after it priced 4.5 million shares at $16 each Thursday. It had raised the projected price range to $12 to $14 a share from $10 to $12 per share.

Choice One Communications (Nasdaq: CWON) priced 7.145 million shares at $20 each, the high end of its raised range.

Apropos Technology (Nasdaq: APRS), developer of software for contact centers to manage customer voice, e-mail and Web-based interactions, priced its 3.7 million shares at $22 a piece, well above its upwardly revised range of $17 to $19.

Cambridge Technology Partners (Nasdaq: CATP) lost 11/16 to 17 5/16 after it said fourth quarter net loss was 28 cents a share, slightly narrower than First Call's expected loss of 30 cents a share.

Advanced Digital (Nasdaq: ADIC), which makes computer storage products, dropped 3 5/8 to 65 1/8 after it approved a 2-for-1 stock split. The company also topped estimates.

Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HWP) was down 6 to 125 after it reported earnings after Wednesday's bell. Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) fell 3/16 to 97 7/16 with the release of its new Windows 2000.

Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) lost 1 9/16 to 69 1/8, Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO) rose 1 9/16 to 163 1/8, and America Online Inc. (NYSE: AOL) grew 1 3/16 to 52 15/16.