Mar 24, 2004 (12:03 PM EST)
TECH STOCKS: Technology Issues Put Up Solid Gains

Read the Original Article at InformationWeek

After four days of losses, the Nasdaq composite made solid gains Wednesday, and our own InformationWeek 100 index inched upward. But the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 indexes slide for a fifth consecutive day. Technology stocks, which have been among the hardest hit during this two-month correction, were among the day's big winners.

The mixed results came despite upbeat economic news released Wednesday morning. Demand for durable goods made in U.S. factories increased 2.5% in February--higher than the 1.7% increase economists had been expecting--and new-home sales were up 5.8% last month.

Novell's share price surged $1.17, or 12.4%, to $10.63 after the company said it had completed a $50 million investment deal with IBM, which will also ship Novell's SuSE Linux software with its servers. It was a good day for Linux vendors--Red Hat's shares gained 3% on its better-than-expected earnings report late Tuesday.

Microsoft's share price rose 26 cents, or 1.1%, to $24.41 despite the European Union's decision to hit the software maker with a $613 million fine for violating antitrust laws. The EU also ordered Microsoft to offer a version of its Windows operating system without its Media Player software. Intel, Applied Materials, and Hewlett-Packard shares all rose Wednesday. The Nasdaq-100 tracking stock closed at $34.40, up 37 cents, or 1.1%, on moderately heavy trading volume of more than 111 million shares.

Our InformationWeek 100 index rose 0.98 points, or nearly 1%, to close at 309.82, while the Nasdaq rose 7.68 points, or 0.4%, to 1,909.48. However, the Dow fell 15.41 points, or 0.1%, to 10,048.23. The S&P 500 fell 2.63 points, or 0.2%, to finish the day at 1,091.32.

See the full listing of all the companies in the InformationWeek 100 and the top 5 percentage winners and losers for the last closing at informationweek.com/stocks.