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The major indexes finished up slightly Wednesday, mostly coasting on the strength of Tuesday's strong rally that followed the Federal Reserve Board's decision to leave interest rates unchanged.
Several tech issues were among the strongest stocks on the market. PalmSource, the newly spun-off division of Palm that covers handheld operating systems and software, rose 38.6% in its first day of trading, climbing $11 to close at $39.50. Red Hat rose 7%, or 97 cents, to $14.83; Ericsson rose 4.1%, or 74 cents, to $18.64; and PeopleSoft rose 2.2%, or 45 cents, to $20.76. The losers included AT&T, which fell 87 cents, or 4%, to $19.07, after industry sources said merger talks with BellSouth fell through.
For the day, the InformationWeek 100 rose 0.98%, or 2.94 points, to 302.83, and the Nasdaq index rose 0.2%, or 4.30 points, to 1,936.56. The Nasdaq-100 tracking stock fell slightly, losing 4 cents to end at $35.32 as nearly 74 million shares changed hands.
The Dow rose 0.3%, or 26.22 points, to 9,774.53, and the S&P 500 rose 0.1%, or 1.32 points, to 1,048.11.