RealTime IT News

Cisco Leads Techs Higher

Better-than-expected earnings from Cisco Systems drove the Nasdaq higher on Wednesday, but just about everything else traded lower.

The ISDEX slipped 2 to 749. The Nasdaq rose 36 to 3885, but 50 points off its high. The S&P 500 was off 4 to 1478, and the Dow dropped 67 to 10,909. Volume rose to 470 million shares on the NYSE and 725 million on the Nasdaq. Decliners led 13 to 12 on the NYSE and 18 to 17 on the Nasdaq. 24/7 Media, Healtheon and Applied Materials will report earnings tonight, and Dell Computer will report tomorrow. For earnings reports, visit our earnings calendar and reported earnings.

After the bell on Tuesday, Cisco beat estimates by a penny with fourth-quarter earnings of 16 cents a share. The company's revenues rose 60% to 5.72 billion, above even the most optimistic estimates of $5.6 billion. Cisco rose 2 3/8 to 67 7/8, but pulled back after trading as high as 70 13/16. The stock faces important resistance at $70.

Phone.com soared 13 19/32 on news that it is buying Software.com , up 35 3/4 to 143 1/2, for 1.6105 shares of PHCM for each share of SWCM. Phone.com also announced another coup: Cisco executive Donald Listwin, who had been considered heir apparent to Cisco CEO John Chambers, will become president of Phone.com.

Critical Path fell 5 3/4 to 59 1/4, giving back all of yesterday's gains, after announcing the acquisition of PeerLogic for 6.4 million shares.

Interwave gained 1 1/8 to 12 7/8 after the company beat estimates by 2 cents with a fourth-quarter loss of 11 cents a share.

PSINet lost 1 7/16 to 18 3/8 on a Chase H&Q downgrade from Buy to Hold. PSI had risen yesterday on a better-than-expected second-quarter loss.

Rhythms fell 1 3/16 to 12 13/16 after Thomas Weisel recommended that investors in the stock sell into strength. The stock gained yesterday on news of the Verizon/NorthPoint DSL merger.

VA Linux gained 4 13/16 to 39 1/16 on a Deutsche Bank Alex. Brown Strong Buy rating.

NBC Internet lost 9/16 to 10 7/16 on news that the company will reduce its workforce by 20%, or 170 employees.

Register.com slipped 1/4 to 18 1/4 after the company announced that it plans to withdraw a secondary offering of 4 million shares because of unfavorable market conditions.

MyPoints.com slipped 7/16 to 13 1/4 on a USB Piper Jaffray downgrade from Strong Buy to Buy. CMGI , which was also downgraded, fell 2 3/8 to 38.

Digital Island lost 1 1/64 to 28 1/2 on a Kaufman Bros. downgrade from Buy to Accumulate. The company met with analysts yesterday.

B2B stocks were lower on lukewarm comments from Jefferies & Co. Commerce One lost 1 5/8 to 49 5/8, again turning back above its recent 52-53 breakout point. Ariba lost 4 3/4 to 137 3/4, but stayed above yesterday's breakout point of 135. i2 slipped 3/4 to 140 1/8, after turning back yesterday at 148 1/2 at what appears to be the upper boundary of a rising wedge.

Some technical comments on the market: We said the Dow was likely to turn back today, and so far it has. The index closed yesterday right at the upper boundary of its bearish diamond pattern. A close above 11,000 on high volume would just about take that pattern out of play. So far, the index's decline has been halted by the